Last summer, back in Canada, I began the process of applying for my Residente Temporal status to live in Mexico on a more permanent basis.
My first step was to take a completed application, along with my passport and proof of pension income to the nearest Mexican Consulate. I am fortunate to live in a town that happens to have one, a mere five-minute drive from my house. I am also extremely fortunate that my neighbour, Jaime Muñoz happens to work there. (A little side note here, a cherry pie goes a long way in building good relationships.)
Two weeks later, I had the preliminary identification card attached in my passport. Muñoz explained to me that I had 30 days from the date I entered Mexico to go to the immigration office and complete the process of registration and legalization, after which I would receive my card. Finding Immigration in Melaque proved to a bit of a challenge as construction on a new town hall and police station forced the office to another location – twice.
Having lived in Mexico for a few years, I was neither surprised nor worried that I wouldn’t find it, ask enough people and some kind soul will usually walk you right to the front door. Again paperwork was completed, fees were paid, and I was told that I would receive an e-mail when it was time to return to be fingerprinted. It took about three weeks to get the notification, and it came by a phone call from the office at 7 p.m. on a Thursday. I was instructed to be at the office at 8:15 a.m. the next morning. After all was said and done, the agent told me that I needed to be on the Malecon in Barra de Navidad at noon on Monday for a ceremonial presentation to receive my status card. This was the first time that the cards had ever been presented in this manner.