Sunday, April 3, 2016

Adventures in Fingerprint Land

We've found that there are a lot of preparations to make before going to Australia and one of the most involved is obtaining an Australian Temporary Work Visa.  Earlier this week we visited the local RCMP office in Kelowna to have our fingerprints and photos taken, so that they could be sent off to Ottawa and checked for past criminal activity on our part.  Fortunately, there hasn't been any so we should receive a report to that effect shortly.

When we went to the fingerprint centre, we had to go through a locked door.  Preceding us was a fellow serving time on weekends and before us on the wall was a number of mug shots of people who are wanted for various crimes in Canada.  We did not feel like we fit in very well!

As Jan sat to get her photo taken, she found the bench a little high and slippery.  She remarked that it was not very comfortable and the very pleasant officer working there said that it wasn't supposed to be comfortable.  She balanced on her tip toes just to stay in position for her photo.  We guess her legs are too short to be a typical candidate for a mug shot.

The fingerprinting no longer involves messy ink but rather they are taken electronically.  The device was having a hard time reading our prints and the officer needed to state a reason to over-ride that.  We thought "getting old and worn out" might describe it well, but that wasn't in his drop down menu of reasons.

In contrast to the small, claustrophobic room, the duty officer was very friendly, helping us to feel at ease while going through the process.  As he unlocked the door to let us out (reminding us that yes, we were in prison and you can't leave on your own), we were grateful we were only there for a short fingerprinting session!  We were also grateful to see that the RCMP office is run with such efficiency and by (for us) friendly people.