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BrettGC last won the day on August 16 2018

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About BrettGC

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    Royal Member

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    Cairns, Australia/Destination Unknown
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    Aikido, diving, surfing, reading, rugby, cricket and people.

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  1. Went off well mate. The judge was aware that the originally allocated judge had refused to marry us so gave me a bit of grilling with regards to being a divorcee but he was a good guy and actually just doing his "nanny-state" due process prior to the actual ceremony. He actually gave Peter (my sponsor and fellow forum member) a bit of a grilling as well as to my character. Sadly, I'm back in Australia again but will be there full-time sooner rather than later hopefully.
  2. I guess the bottom line is not every visa type suits everyone; SRRV, 13a or tourist all have their pro's and cons depending on personal circumstances. Bottom line is, do the research and work out which is best for you and your circumstances. We're all different and have different requirements and preferences.
  3. Oh, I forgot to mention Tacloban. Great city and you don't have to travel far for beaches.
  4. Hi -A- and welcome. Do you have a preference for North or South? It's almost like visiting 2 different countries in that respect. Given your comments I'm guessing somewhere in size in-between Dumaguete and Cebu City. I've never spent more than a couple of days in Iloilo or Bacolod but what I saw impressed me in both cities. We have members in both that could give you more info, my missus isn't a fan of either as "they talk funny up there". Puerto Princessa is beautiful but only slightly larger than Dumaguete but is better serviced than other locales due to the tourist trade there. Downside is a bit more expensive because of the tourist trade. Puerto Galera is in a similar boat but again, beautiful. Tagbileran on Bohol really impressed me but may be too small for what you're after. Exploring the Philippines is half the fun. Maybe a couple of months in different locations would work for you depending on your circumstances. Anyway, welcome again.
  5. Speaking to staff at the Australian embassy in Manila a few weeks ago, there are plans for an online service "in the not-to-distant future". I read this as taking up to two years. 18 months is my planned permanent move here so my feeling is that whichever way I go, 13A or SRRV, I'll be visiting Manila at least once during either process. Again, as Don stated, that depends on whether I begin the process for either in Australia or PI. Either that or I'll be making a trip to Canberra to visit the PI Embassy at some point as PI recently closed their Brisbane (my closest) consulate so Manila upon arrival is actually more convenient for me - I'm in Cairns, look it up, it's long flight to Canberra.
  6. Given my impending marriage this week I'm still tossing up between the two.
  7. Happy to be wrong on this. Mick not sure of your circumstances but if you're married to a Filipina 13a visa is an option.
  8. If you're ex-military from an "allied" country the deposit is only 2000USD. NATO, Australia and NZ all qualify.
  9. Thanks mate. The date works for me, only one date to remember and buy a present for
  10. If on a mobile device a poster's details aren't visible. Only name and avatar.
  11. Paul I recently renewed my Aussie passport and the passport number has changed. I'm not sure if it's the number BI need or whether the same would happen with a UK passport but personally I'd inform BI of the new number if it does indeed change.
  12. Unfortunately for us, due to the local city requirements, the things we had problems with (time issues at the PSA aside), I had to be there in person for. Hopefully we're all done now. Thanks John John, would you believe she actually "owns" the title now, she's proud of it! Once her and my mother - known as the "Kitchen Tiger" - got their heads together it stuck. AM's nickname amongst my family is "Midge" which she loves.
  13. TL;DR (Too Long; Don't Read) - Given our experiences of the last couple of weeks, don't get married in PI, do it in your home country. So, we've completed all the requirements and were just waiting on the marriage licence to be processed and a raffle to see which judge at the Hall of Justice was going to marry us. So we arrived at the Hall of Justice - still no Judge Dredd - only to be told by the guard that we couldn't enter without a face mask. Now I'm not going to go into the false security a surgical mask provides or the lack of efficacy in wearing one in the context of the current scare but needless to say our hearts sank. Just walking around Dumaguete we'd seen multiple signs at pharmacies saying they were sold out. Luckily, AM (Angry Midget) is a very un-Filipina Filipina in that she always insists we arrive to any given appointment/event 30 mins early; our appointment was for 3pm and we'd arrived at 230pm so we had a little time up our sleeve. She also remembered our motel reception had them. So, back into a trike, full-speed back to the Golden Gate, bought a couple, then back to the Hall of Justice - still no Judge Dredd. We were granted entry and proceeded up to the courtroom where the raffle was being conducted with 10 mins to spare. Once seated a group of clerks and judges all filed in and one of the clerks started spinning a bingo machine. As the balls were pulled out and the numbers called, I resisted the urge to yell out "BINGO!" The process went on for about 20 mins as it turns out it wasn't just a raffle for civil marriages, it was for all cases being heard at the court the following week. We were subsequently shuffled off to one of the judge's chambers and waited in an ante-chamber while the judge reviewed our paperwork in her office. There'd been a clerk that has assisted us the previous week and she seemed to be the one that facilitates all the weddings conducted at Hall of Justice. After about 20 mins, the clerk appeared and stated there was a problem with my Certificate of no Impediment from the Australian Embassy. I know for a fact this is a form letter where the only changes that are ever made are in the first paragraph where the applicant's personal details are entered and no doubt has been used in hundreds, if not thousands of weddings between Australians and Philippine nationals over the years. After we left the judge's chambers the clerk explained very quietly that the judge in question is staunchly Catholic and took issue with the fact I'm a divorcee - legally terminated marriage in Australia and officially recognised by numerous nations that are signatories to that particular international agreement, The Philippines being one of them. Separation of church and state?? I know, I should know better given the context but it still annoyed the shit out of me. In conversations with the clerk during the previous weeks, we discovered that her sister living in Australia, is close friends with one of my best mates from high school - they are both doctors of marine biology at James Cook University in Townsville in Queensland. Greg, my mate, had been her sister's doctoral supervisor. Small world. So based on this, she was going to put in a good word with another judge. Nepotism is king and I'll take it. Off we shuffle, both of us feeling a little dejected, to another judge's chambers. After waiting another 10 minutes, a smiling gentlemen came out of the judges office and asked: "How does February 14 at 10am sound?". He then stated "Well it is a raffle, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but I'm happy to take care of this for you." So with a bit more of a spring in our step, off we went. Hopefully that's the end of the saga until the day of the event, but we'll see. Given the events of the last couple of weeks, I'm not holding my breath. I wonder if we'll have to wear face masks for the ceremony?
  14. I think it gained popularity overseas before its decline in Australia so they just kept catering to the overseas market.
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