On Friday the parents to the kids I look after now (her: S, him: J) went to celebrate one of their friends 30th at Eatons Hill Tavern. Apparently when it's finished it will be the, or one of the, biggest pubs/nightclubs/restaurants/whatever on the southern hemisphere.
The place looks very fancy, and they're very picky on who the let in. Guys can't have mohawks, you can't wear a hoodie, you need the right shoes, etc., etc.. Luckily I bought some heels to go with my pencil skirt earlier that same day so that I wouldn't have to wear my black flat trainers again like I did at the Opera house. They also he a new, very expensive security system. You have to have photo ID, which they scan at the door and when they scan it, they also take your picture.
Mu ID is my passport. A passport is usually the best ID you can have. After S and J had been scanned and photographed I stepped forward to do the same. I handed my passport to the security guard operating the scanner.
"We don't take passports."
I was completely dumbstruck! So was S and J. When we got our ability to talk back, we asked why and if there was anything else we could do, since it was my only ID. Apparently the reason was that it wouldn't scan. He also said there was nothing he could do, so S asked him to get his manager down to talk with us.
When the guy (finally) turned up he was no help either. He told us I had to have a drivers licence or something else approved by the Australian government. At this point the mother of the guy whose 30th we were supposed to be celebrating came back out to help us. She works for the Australian Federal Government (or something) and told the guy that a passport, as soon as it's stamped on arrival in the country, is approved by the Australian government. (Duh!) He still wouldn't let me in. I asked if he would accept a Norwegian bank card, which has my date of birth on it, my picture and my signature (it's what we use as ID in Norway), but no. Not that I thought he would, but it was worth a try.
As we were talking among ourselves trying to figure out what to do, S was getting really angry and I was just sad that I would ruin their evening, a guy in a different shirt than the other two, but clearly someone that worked there, walked past. S tapped him on the shoulder and asked if he was the manager, to which he answered "one of", so S told him about our problem, mentioning that only approving Australian issued ID's was both discriminating and racist. This guy asked to see my passport and took it with him inside telling us he was just going to check something with his supervisors. Less than a minute later he came back out and said it was okay, and told me I could get inside. He told the first guy we talked to to type in Norway into his scanner thing, and would you look at that! He scanned my passport!!
We were stood outside trying to sort this out for about 30 minutes! We did have a nice time though, when we finally got inside.
I wonder if I will have to go through all that again if I ever go back there...?