Sew What

One of the more annoying aspects of doing business over here are the litany of completely asinine regulations that have to be dealt with. Usually, the reason you can't get anything done is because someone will tell you that you need a particular "Spravka" to do whatever it is that you want to do. Spravka is kind of tough to translate, as there's no exact equivalent word in English...but it's some sort of official document that will be covered in stamps and seals and the like.
Today we hit a new level in stupidity, that's pictured above. Documents we submitted to someone were rejected because they were not SEWN TOGETHER. As in with needle and thread. Think about this for a minute...I wish I was making this up. We had to take the documents back, sew them together (cooking string was used), then glue the excess string to the back of the documents under a second sheet of paper. That second sheet of paper and the documents then had to be stamped with our corporate seal. It was explained by a local that works in our office here that this is done to ensure that pages aren't removed or tampered with. Because, you know, people always want to swap out pages of a letter. Especially once they have been put directly in the hands of a recipient that is rejecting them BECAUSE THEY AREN'T SEWN TOGETHER.

I have been told of an American that used to work here. Whenever it was required for him to stamp a document he would whip out a Mickey Mouse stamp he had and use that. I have decided to rip that off and will be purchasing a stamp and ink pad set when I am next in the states. Perhaps SpongeBob, as that will be even more mystifying to the locals. Posted by Hello