We needed to get Peter’s passport renewed and as we lived in Poland at that time, we made an appointment at the Hungarian embassy in Warsaw.
I made sure to check what exactly we needed to bring with us because we only had this one shot to get it right. (Peter can’t just get a day off anytime he wants). They informed me that he would only need to have his current passport with him to get the ball rolling with the new passport request.
Our appointment was at 12pm on a Thursday (they only have office hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays). We got there a little early and rang the doorbell. Someone answered and said we needed to go to the ‘other side’ and ring the bell there. We then walked around the whole block, but didn’t find another door or doorbell for that matter. We saw a big gate with a couple of trash cans next to it but it was closed and no doorbell. We went back to the starting point, and rang front doorbell again. The lady on the intercom explained to us that it is indeed the gate with the trash cans, and it would open at 12pm on the dot. So we went back there and sat down next to the trash cans.
We got in slightly after 12pm. Two young ladies greeted us on the inside who looked liked they were expecting us. One of them says: you’ll need your current passport, birth certificate, national ID, a photo for the passport and ah, you can only pay in cash and only in euros. it will be 85 euros.
WTF?! I thought. Out loud I did utter a very shocked WHAT?! I was told we only needed the current passport?! She answered: No, sorry you need all the other documents too.
I felt like pulling all my hair out. How does something like that even happen? Then I composed myself and realized that just by pure luck we actually have all that. I only had the birth certificate in a scanned form, but the nice lady kindly said she is happy for me to send it to her in an email. I had some euros for our upcoming trip (our wedding) in Cyprus, and a small picture of Peter in my wallet. And I took his ID when we were leaving from home just in case…
So I gave her all that, and felt very relieved that somehow by pure luck we had all that with us. Then she said the picture isn’t good enough. It was a little bit battered as I’ve had it in my wallet for quite a few months. So we had to go to a place close by where they made ID photos and come back with those to the embassy. I couldn’t believe that they can’t even take his photo there!
At the end she approved the documents and off we went, happy about not having to go back there again.