In Romania we love papers. For every situation, thinkable and unthinkable, there's a paper. A formal request, a petition, a memorial, a letter or an application. As if I didn't have enough of these things on a daily basis at work, where I suspect we'll end up writing petitions requesting permission to write petitions, today I started putting the pieces together for my MA. Given the fact that I'll be studying in Warsaw, I figured it won't be a big deal (I still have this tendency of idealizing Poland - nothing can go wrong there, nothing works against you). I was particularly impressed by their online registration process, which gave me a very good reason to complain some more about my own Uni here in Bucharest. For about five minutes. Then I discovered it's not easy at all. First comes this part of the registration, then the fun begins. Of course, it all comes down to papers. Apparently, Poles love them as well. When I came to terms with the fact that I also need to print my entire academic record, I finally faced the absurdity of the situation. The guys at the office in Warsaw informed me I cannot mail all these docs. Someone has to take them to the office. But it doesn't matter who does that. Doesn't have to be me, it can very well be some random person. I kept thinking about this, trying to find a reasonable explanation, and in the end I gave up, trying instead to find a random person with spare time on their hands.
And there's another thing I can't understand. The pictures attached to my academic record have very strict dimensions and characteristics (which makes sense), there's only one type of acceptable background (I'm ready to admit this also makes sense) and they have to be semiprofile, with the left ear visible (does this make sense?) And here's the irony: I have a picture that matches the description in the tiniest detail, but it shows the right ear - I took it shortly after shaving the right side of my head and I was very happy to expose it. Before getting my haircut, I pondered over the decision quite a long time, simply because I didn't know which side of the head to shave. And deep down inside I've always wondered if it would have looked better the other way round. Now I know my doubts were actually a premonition. The left ear knew her fifteen minutes of fame would come, sooner or later. I just didn't expect the University of Warsaw to have anything to do with it.