So, you might remember Miguel applying for an Italian visitor's visa about a month ago. It was denied on the spot, but his passport was detained at the embassy for 3 weeks after. I'm not sure how they can get away with doing that in the first place, but as you are at their mercy...there's nothing you can do.
Miguel's appointment date to retrieve his passport landed on Oct. 31st right in the middle of tropical storm Noel where all of Santo Domingo was flooded. Needless to say he couldn't go that day but went on the following day only to find out that was a day where they don't give back passports. He would have to return on a Monday or Wednesday. Since the following Monday was a holiday it had to be the following Wednesday.
The time allotted for picking up passports is between 3 and 5. Miguel arrived and found a line of waiting people leading down the street and around the corner. As they organize people, they put the people who were there but not on their appointment date at the back of the line and say that if they don't have time to attend them before 5, they have to come back another day. You have to understand, for us to take a trip down to the capital takes all day and money to get down there and back. Its not that fun of a deal travelling down there.
So at 4:30, Miguel starts pounding on the window of the embassy and asks for his passport back. After a few reprimands to sit down and him refusing they say they are going to kick him out. Fine, he says," just give me back my passport first!" In the end, he left being escorted out by the security guard, but with his passport in hand.
Its not an approach I would recommend, but sometimes it just is what you have to do to get what you need. If only other countries used the mail system like the States....how lovely life would be.