Today I tried to make an appointment to apply for my residency card. I braced myself for it not going well. It did not. I went to one place, where I was told to go to another place, where I waited for three hours to be told to go back to the first place. Went back, and it was the correct place, yet I didn't have any of the documents I needed. So It was a wasted day.
The whole process was completely ridiculous and genuinely French. Doing anything of importance here requires 1. waiting in line, 2. being sent elsewhere, and 3. heaps of paperwork. If you're not from France, it's exponentially more difficult. I almost feel guilty for saying so, but this is a xenophobic country. It's not a stereotype. France chokes at the thought of outsiders coming in. So they purposefully make it hard for the non-french.
Even though today was miserable, I wasn't too bothered. France is France, with its gorgeous architecture, rich history, beautiful language. Oh, and also its sucky bureaucracy. It's part of the package. I'm not going to appreciate it, but I'll stomach it.