Saturday, 15 December 2007

Naturalisation

The cost of applying for British citizenship has gone up again (hurray, I hear reverberating from some distant British National Party dungeon, pardon, office).

A test is needed for permanent residency, too. With a different brochure for studying questions on the essence of British life, and one would have to buy this, followed by the brochure for naturalisation test.

Fine. Obviously, Home Office has to cover the costs of their recent scandals around... well, just about everything they do.

But... I am wondering... wouldn't it be much better to have the following test applied, after which much less people would want still to settle here than the amount that go through the test:

- watch any town centre on a Friday night, around 11PM, preferably around clubs and bars, but not necessarily. If the sights of that surreal zoo that gets unleashed on the streets is not a deterrent, then proceed to stage two:

- get a train ticket and try to get to a destination 50-60 miles away with a maximum error margin of 15-20 minutes

- then try and fly into or out of Heathrow such that you sit for less than 1.5 hours on the ground while they try to find a slot

- then try and send 10 parcels with Royal Mail, as first class packets, see how many arrive within the 1st class delivery time - or at all, for that matter

- then, as grand finale, drive on the M25 in any direction and try to get somewhere with a maximum margin of error set to 30 minutes

- as all else fails, try to cycle in most of the cities without getting killed, along imaginary cycle paths- and when you do see a real one, don't be too shocked and fall off the bike... and get killed

- then to unwind, read the front pages of the Daily Mail and The Sun.

After these basic steps, one would have a) a very good understanding and picture on life here, b) would have a resilience and tolerance level that truly deserves to be rewarded.

Just one note on that, if you do file an application, see if they lose it together with other tens of thousands of passports and files while they are 'optimising' their offices.

If they don't lose it, then just rest assured that all your personal details will be lost later on some non-encrypted CD-Rom, together with other millions of people's details.

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