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Absolute Rip-off

Being British you get used to certain formalities facilitated to make life easy in the fast lane. Life shouldn’t be complicated, and to the contrary a seamless flow to concentrate on more important matters!

My front number plate came off my car while going through a deep puddle last week because of the terrible rain in São Paulo. If you’re in the UK just take your vehicle registration document and proof of ID to a registered plate supplier and they will sell you a new plate - they’ll probably make it for you while you wait.

Here in Brazil the process is long-winded. First you need to go to a police station to report the incident officially, in other words the inspector completes a report. Then there is no simple way around it because the new format of number plates under Mercosur requires renewal. Yes, you are right, the responsible party “Detran” are obliging me to purchase the whole package which means a new number. So, I can’t maintain the number plate I have had since buying my brand-new car in 2012.

Part of the process requires me to go to an official representative of the driving board to have the car inspected. No idea why it needs to be inspected, as I have already informed the police under no obligation. There are also elevated costs involved to fuel the bureaucratical system. For Christ’s sake, it’s only a piece of metal with a few letters and numbers on it!

To make it worse, instead of one simple website to organize the whole process I’m still confused as there are several conflicting ones like,, or Detran gave me three attempts to remember my password and then blocked me. You couldn’t make it up if you wanted. 

Living in Brazil has taught me that tolerance is a key worth having, but it isn’t easy. Brazil is a wonderful country for many reasons, but corruption and bureaucracy are two reasons for its downfall. There is a third and I’m writing this blog to help people wake up and understand; life requires thoughtfulness and putting yourself in other people’s shoes to learn and appreciate the need to make rational decisions based on knowledge and experience, and not impulsiveness or wishful thinking!

Certainly, it is going to take some sweat out of me to resolve what should be simple A, B, C. Patience is a virtue!

Have a great day!

Prof. Carl Boniface 


Vocabulary builder:

Long-winded (adj) = lengthy, wordy, expansive, verbose, rambling, long-drawn-out, interminable

Seamless (adj) = unified, all-in-one, one-piece, whole, continuous

Wishful thinking (idiom) = the attribution of reality to what one wishes to be true or the tenuous (unsubstantiated) justification of what one wants to believe.

Sweat (n) = perspiration, fluid, secretion, moisture, dampness, wetness

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