Friday, May 8, 2009

You know you are in Brazil when

You know when you are in Brazil when you have to spend three hours to cash two paychecks.

Fine with me. I have the time and the iPod. But it is a curious way of doing business for the masses. It seems things could be smoothed out a bit. I’m just saying…

My version of this reality is this: I get paid for my month’s work at each school on the fifth workday of the following month. To then cash those checks I have to wait in line at the branch of the bank where each check originates. The funny (strange, not ha ha) thing is that both checks are from the same bank. But I am required to go to the branch on Gavião Peixoto Street to cash one check and then walk 10 blocks to the Miguel de Frias Street branch to cash the other.

Believe me – I have pointed out to tellers repeatedly that they are the SAME BANK presumably operating on the SAME computer network. Why must I go to different physical locations?!

Breathe. When in Brazil…

Now – this problem will be solved when I am added to our bank account and I can use the ATM machine. I will then just deposit the check from any ATM. But our bank branch is requiring that I produce a federal ID before I can be added to the account (key word in that sentence is “branch”). My physical federal ID is still in the pipeline. It should be here in the coming month or so.

In the mean time I spend the better part of a morning or afternoon processing my paychecks.

The flip side – and another “You know you are in Brazil when…” example is that while waiting in those bank lines I will become instant friends with the people in front and behind me, talking about everything from how long everything takes to how beautiful their new grandchildren are. I like that part.

1 comment:

GingerV said...

can you believe it... seems like they work at making it harder to do business... My check is deposited directly into my bank account - different banks and all. then I use the atm to pay any bills, and the internet to move any money around within my bank.... seems to work better than here in the USA where you have to drive miles to use the actual bank for deposit.