Friday, June 3, 2011

The Journey Has Begun

As most of you had already seen the photos from our simple civil wedding, I guess it is about time to narrate what we had been through to get there and start the journey together, a journey for the best.

Well, the Presiding Judge had already told my story during the marriage, so I guess there is nothing to hide here anymore, this is my site, I'm free to tell everything!

It all started when I asked for the list of requirements needed for application of marriage. Since I was still working that time, I asked my mom to go and ask at San Jose Municipal Civil Registry. The supervisor there had given my mom this list:

1. Birth Certificate
2. CEDULA
3. CENOMAR
4. Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage (for my German spouse, I would discuss this later)
5. Photocopy of Passport of my German spouse
6. Copy of Divorce Paper of my German spouse

(Disclaimer: The list was specific for me, to see complete list, please refer to another blogger at http://pinoyingermany.blogspot.com.)


Afterwards, she said, we should wait for 12 days before the release of our marriage license. I thought the 12 days wait was a little long, so I asked mom to go and check at Lipa City Municipal Civil Registry, and the guy there asked for the same requirements and he said he would do his best to shorten the 12 days wait. I thought it was a better deal, and told mom to go on at Lipa City. However, I CANNOT FILE ALONE. We need to wait for U to come. Until we received another suggestion, and it is faster as any of the two. The other one is that the secretary at San Jose Municipal Hall would make a certain statement and will be notarized and we could get married on that same day too. The catch? We must declare that we had been living together for five years. I had second thought about it, because I believe there would be documents to be asked to confirm that we are together for 5 years. But they say there would be no problem, no one would ask about it. So we set our hopes high that 3 days after U's arrival, we could get married. Until that day came...

So as suggested, we go and visited the secretary and asked for the specific document. Afterwards, we made an appointment with the judge we prefer to have for marriage. She was not yet there, so what we did was to process the remaining documents and paid the necessary fees. In the afternoon, the judge asked us to stay and she would give us a short counselling. She came and reviewed our documents and she changed her facial expression. She did not accept the document we brought from the secretary, she said she would accept it IF we could prove to her that we really lived together CONTINUOUSLY. That is something difficult to prove, because my visa were only for tourist and his as well. She said we need to go on the regular way. That moment when she said that, I cried...

I am not exactly sure why I cried, it was a mixture of emotions. First, he could not understand the reason, he already believed and hoped that it would be that fast, and we were already having arguments, right in front of the judge and right in front of the clerks. Secondly, I felt frustrated as well, like U, I already set my hopes high too. Thirdly, my relatives had already invited people on the wedding, just how frustrating could that be. It took me hours before I felt a little okay. Then we both realized, that we have no other choice. We processed the documents the normal way, and asked that his Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage* be submitted at a latter date. Lucky for us, the civil registry agreed. That same night, we packed our things and booked a hotel at Manila, because we have to process his legal capacity early the next morning. Because it was already late, there were only 2 hotels with available room for us, GoHotels.com and New Horizon Hotel, both at Mandaluyong. These two were not your typical 5-star hotel, but we have no choice. I booked at GoHotels, being loyal with Robinsons Corporation. In the end, it was worth all worth it. We paid only around Php3600 for two nights (without breakfast), but we are satisfied with the cleanliness and the accessibility of the hotel (it's just across Robinsons Pioneer), plus the coffee at the cafe (Tokyo Cafe) was superb, the only coffee that U enjoyed in the Philippines.

Now, to talk about Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage (Ehefaehigkeitzeugnis auf Deutsch). We left Lipa City at 7am and was at Makati at 8am. First adventure: the taxi drivers were asshole as always. They would not drive us to RSBC where Germany Embassy is located because of heavy traffic jam along Ayala Avenue. I told them I know that since I am working at Makati as well, and that is the reason why they have the meter. They asked for a fixed price between Php 150 to 200 just to bring us there, I gave them the BIGGEST NO as an answer. Luckily, one cab came, and took us, the fare was only Php 80 from Magallanes MRT station to RSBC Tower, but I gave him Php100 for being an honest driver (imagine how much it really cost, even with the new flag rate of Php40). We arrived at the Embassy half past 9am, thanks to those asshole taxi drivers we were not able to get there at exactly 9am. Still, we were thankful that we are early and the first one to be at Window 5, the window where one submits the pending documents, and where the Germans go when they need something from the embassy. The woman asked us where we are from and I said from Batangas. She asked if we are going to drive back to Batangas or we would be staying in the city. U said we had already booked a hotel, I did not know that they have an option that they could release the Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage in the afternoon IF we are not staying in the city. But since we are staying, she scheduled the release for the following day. For more details on what legal capacity is, and how it looks like, visit pinoyingermany again.

We were finished for the day, so I asked him to go with me at Goethe Institut to claim my SD2 certificate (by the way, I passed it again with flying colors and got a new shirt!). He met one of my favorite teachers, Donn, and the admin assistant, Nana. It is so sweet that these two people told him great stories about me as a student, so sweet! In the afternoon, we went to see Thor at Shang Cineplex. It was really not in our itinerary, but since we cannot find the kind of shirt he is looking for (a shirt we found ONLY at Duty Free), we watched the movie instead. After the movie, we went out for dinner with my cousins at Robinsons Pioneer. The next day, after we claimed the legal capacity, we went to MOA to check for his shirt again, sadly, we did not find it there as well. So I called on my cousin and her girlfriend to join us the whole day, and we went to Fort Santiago instead. It was again a day of facing those asshole taxi drivers.

The next day, we drove back to Batangas to attend the Counselling and Family Planning seminar.
 

I asked the person in charge if it is okay for us not to attend and I'd have the copy as well because he does not understand anything anyway, the seminar's being taught in Tagalog. He is not so good in English, what more in Tagalog. We were lucky that they agreed! After that day, the waiting time for marriage license had begun. They released the license on the 13th of May, and we scheduled our marriage on the 15th. We were so lucky to have people who are willing to help out even if everything was in a rush. We were lucky too to have someone who knows the judge and agreed on a special appointment for our marriage. Imagine a civil wedding on a Sunday, isn't it so unusual? Thanks to Judge for making it possible.

And that was the start of a journey I had long been praying for. I am now on the second step and thank God everything is going on as planned.

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