We arrived at the parking at 6:00 on Saturday morning and in the queue outside at 6:25. Despite the fact that this branch of the Department of Home Affairs only opened at 08:30. The wait was guaranteed to be long… so I attempted small talk – a trusted coping mechanism in the face of sloppy administration: “So why do you need your passport?” I posed to a tall girl with red dreadlocks who was next to me in the queue.
“I need it so that my partner can apply for my alien visa when I go to the US. Can you believe they actually call it that?” She exclaimed. I wasn’t sure if her exasperation was at their immigration policies or South Africa’s overwhelming bureaucracies. I laughed to hide my uncertainty.
“So which planet are you from?”