my afternoon in hell....other wise known as the DMV

On Friday I worried when I could barely find a parking space. But my in-laws were watching the kids and it was Spring Break and I figured it was now or never to replace my driver’s license.
According to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website you are allowed to renew your license on line or change your address or change your name pretty much anything except get a replacement. The punishment for losing your wallet is to sit in their little corner of hell for as long as it takes.
So I walked in. Saw the hoards of people and turned around and walked out. I just didn’t have the patience and couldn’t waste my last afternoon of Spring Break in line. As I headed back to the car, that little grown up in me decided I better be responsible and take care of it. So I went back in. I got in line to get a number and called Shaun to tell him how ridiculous the line was but that I was going to suck it up and finally take care of it seeing how I lost my wallet months ago. And just last week I even lost my back up license. (yes my irresponsibility is an issue for another blog post).I got off the phone with Shaun where I cussed the line and commended myself for sticking it out when a man behind me kindly tapped on my shoulder and said,
“Ma’am the line starts back there”
As in 50 more people in a line that I already thought was ridiculous back there.
To which I walked out the door.
Maybe just this DMV is crazy, so I tried another. I actually managed to get to the front desk this time but only to have the lady tell me that it was a 2.5 hour wait. So again I left and vowed again to try another day. Surely this was just lunch hour Spring Break crazy.

So today I hightailed it out of school and hit the DMV as fast as I could.
Again the packed parking lot and the crowd of people outside were a bad sign. But the line to check in was only about a dozen people deep which was much better than the 50+ from Friday so I told the lady that I needed a replacement license. Asked her if there was any way I could do it online (she said no) and took my number.
The red marquee said 36.
I am pretty good with math but refused to do that subtraction because I was afraid Shaun would make me walk to school if I didn’t come home with a license today.
I took one of the only free seats in the place and got comfy.
And I stared at the red marquee that never seemed to change.
Equipped with my magic phone I checked my email. I updated my facebook status. I texted every single person in my contacts. I played dumb games.
One hour had passed.
And the red sign only said 58.
All the cute 16 year olds dressed up for their photo and chatting it up with their friends were getting on my nerves. I looked for anything to read. Say a pamphlet on anger management or patience or calm breathing techniques but had to settle for the obscenities that were scratched on my chair and the forms I had to fill out were ridiculous. Instead of asking if you would like to be an organ donor now it says,
“In case of death would you be willing to make an anatomical gift”
An anatomical gift that is just creepy. Please take my organs but don’t wrap them up and put a bow on them. I checked yes anyways.
I re-texted everyone in my contacts just in case they didn’t get my first message.
I got caught up on my google reader and I cursed myself for leaving the house without a book and a bottle of hand sanitizer.
The red sign seemed to be broken. Really I wondered what would happen if I just unplugged it. Oooops.
But apparently someone had already thought of that because it was literally screwed into the outlet. And covered up with bars. And a security guard started to give me the stink eye.
People were literally cheering when their numbers flashed on the screen. And when my number came up I had to control my urge to do a happy dance.
Which was short lived because as soon as I went behind the magic wall where all the people with the lucky numbers got to go was ANOTHER LINE! This one was shorter and moved a tad faster but I was starting to see the hold up. There were 3 workers behind the counter and each one appeared at least 80 years old and I swear to you mine typed with one finger on the computer. I explained that I lost my license and needed a new one and that I already had all my proper forms filled out. She asked for photo id even though the whole reason I was here was because I had lost mine….but we worked something out. I gave my fingerprints. I smiled for a picture three times (because people walked in front of me the first 2 times) and I barely passed the vision test. I was just starting to think that I might make it home in time for dinner after all when I asked how much to write the check out for.
She then said, “Well would you just like to renew it”.
I explained that I needed a replacement not a renewal.
She said, yes, but your license will be up for renewal this June why don’t we just renew it instead.
So 2 hours and 58 numbers later I left with a paper renewal that….


Sarah said...

Painful? Yes. But PURE comedy GOLD!!!! Way to take one for the team.

mommaof3 said...

Good grief, Charlie Brown!!

Well written, made me squirm for you, then laugh at the end :)

samskat said...

hahahaha....when my sister in law went to get her first license as a married woman, she waited in all those long lines...and then when her license came in 2 weeks later, realized that she had signed the thing with her maiden she had to do it all over again....LOVE the DMV....