Well it appears we’ve succeeded at obtaining a legitimate 30 day visa for me in China. While in Guilin, we visited the local Public Security Bureau to inquire about an extension. Word among travelers is that they are quite pleasant to deal with and offer a relatively quick turn around. I’m not sure one week qualifies as a quick turn around, but they were certainly pleasant so I’m not complaining.
When asked why I only had a 10 day visa I replied, “I don’t know. It wasn’t clear to me.” Not a complete distortion of the truth. I was a little nervous when the PSB officer looked me up in the system and then said a polite “excuse me” as she went to talk with a superior. It all seemed too familiar. But she returned with an ok. Yahoo!
From talking with other travelers – all of whom seem to have 60 and 90 day visas! – my situation seemed not very common. Now I certainly know what NOT to include on my application.
And yes, I still promise not to try to convert anyone while in China.