Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Renewing a Driver's License 101...

So I got a card in the mail two days ago notifying me that I needed to renew my driver's license.

I was afraid. Very afraid.

The news has been covering this ridiculously inefficient system  and the long waits it has produced for several months now after the State of Kansas put in this brand new "whoopty doo awesome" system.  It has been a complete cluster.

Awesome! Couldn't WAIT to go!

My license doesn't expire until October but I learned long ago with this cANCER mess, you do stuff now because later might be a different situation when you CAN'T go.

That, and I'm a type A personality. I cannot STAND to have things on my "to do list".  ;)

Okay, okay.... to be completely honest, you have to bring the little postcard they send you in order to renew and I was certain that I would not be able to keep track of it for that long. :)  And I had no idea what they would do if I lost it...I think that's an automatic "go to jail" penalty. LOL!

I was supposed to bring the postcard (that was mailed to me by the State with my address on the front), my old driver's license, money to pay the fee, and proof of residency---which could be a piece of mail that had my address on it from a government agency.

Hmmm...seemed redundant because the government mailed me the postcard I was supposed to bring....


I followed the rules and found my vehicle registration paperwork and had it in my purse ready to go to show proof of residency for fear of it being like hitting the wrong spot on Chutes and Ladders and sliding all the way back to the beginning...or hitting "go to jail" in Monopoly...well the old Monopoly...I hear the new one doesn't have that any more.  Because why again??? It's a freaking GAME...not real life... SHEESH people, stop getting your undies in a bunch over going to fictitious jail in a BOARD GAME!!!

Insert eye roll and sigh...

Meanwhile, back to the DL Bureau, part of our "new system" is an online login system that allows you to save your spot in line and then you just go to the DL Bureau at your designated time.


SO the system opens at 7:00 am. Tuesday morning, I logged in at 7:10 and it was going to be a 5 hour 11 minute wait.


That wait line filled up fast!!

Five hours later wasn't going to land at a time that I could be there so I decided to login FIRST THING this morning.

At 6:58, I started trying...kept pushing refresh every 10 seconds or so.

I got in just as it "opened" online at 7:00...the wait time was already 1 hour and 36 minutes.

Seems like I'm not the only one who learned a lesson...the people who got  in line on Tuesday probably figured it out on Friday when they missed it (they are closed on Monday)...and all of us Tuesday losers figured it out for Wednesday...

The computer screen said they would text me when I was first in line.

(it is several hours after I left the driver's license bureau and I still have not received a text to tell me I'm next in line...note to self, don't rely on that system). ;)

Okee doke...I'm on it...8:36.

Actually, I figured I better be there a little early in case they called my number and I wasn't there and I got bumped out of line and had to wait 7 hours because "I snoozed and I loozed".

SO.....Brian took the boys to school for me so I could make it a few minutes early.

You the event they were running ahead of schedule.


I walked in and it wasn't busy at all!! Just a few people sitting in a sea of chairs.

AWESOME!!  Maybe I WILL get in early?


I then noticed the scrolling monitor, I found my number and I had a 32 minute wait. No least I hadn't missed it.

Then I hear this electronic "ding" and a voice say, "Now serving number "1234" at desk 2".

It was an annoying announcement system. That pseudo-sweet voice and that damn ding every minute or so. I wanted to find the electronic voice and smack the crap out of it! :)  It was the same calm voice that I remember hearing Nurse Ratchett from "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" use at med time.

I was wishing it was med time....or maybe mimosa time.

I also took note that there were 9 desks...only four are actually manned with employees.

Now I'm no Einstein....

But it would seem that when the news has done multiple stories about how inefficient the driver's license bureau is with this "new system" the state is using, you have a 5 hour wait if you log on 10 minutes after the system opens, and before 9:00 AM, every person who entered to sign in in person was being told they had reached their max of people they can handle for the day and they would have to come back the next day...or whenever... you MIGHT want to look at the system...

and fix it...

Perhaps even man all 9 of those desks???

Just a thought...  :)

I'm sure it's all funding related but really....

People take off work, rearrange family schedules and then have to do it again because only 4 desks are open?

I guess "open" is a relative term.

I need a job like that makes no apologies just tells you that you are too late to get in two hours after opening.

I felt the worst for the elderly couples who clearly did not understand how to log in on the computer to save a spot, had gotten all gussied up to come into town and had to go home. You could FEEL the confusion on their faces as they sought to understand what they had to do in order to get in tomorrow...

And I felt sorry for the Driver's License Bureau lady who had to tell each and every one of them that they were too late...unless today was their birthday, she could have them file for a 45 day extension in that event.

She did not receive a lot of love and appreciation.

I understand that.

But it wasn't HER fault...she was the messenger for a broken (and stupid) system.  I made a note that I would not be applying to work at the DL Bureau anytime soon.  Parts of her butt were being bit off with every person she turned away and the ones that remained silent shot daggers with their eyes.

Again...perhaps manning those 9 desks would help?? I'm thinking like 100 desks...that ought to do it. :)

Finally, my number was called and proceeded to desk 7.

I kept telling myself to just SHUT UP until I got my license in my hands...just SHUT UP!!!

She asked for my postcard...good girl, I had it...and I handed her my driver's license...yay me.  I waited to see what she would do for proof of residency. She just asked if my address was the same as it was on the postcard, I said yes and she just kept going through the list of stuff we had to do to get the license.


SO the little yellow postcard DOES work for proof of residency!!!?

But why would they make such a big deal about "proof of residency"...  Reminded myself to just SHUT UP until I had the license in my hand.

That was hard for me to do. ;)

Then I noticed an Hispanic family a few desks down from me. I noticed them because I could see the flailing arms of the lady at their desk and I could hear her getting louder and louder.

She kept explaining about "proof of residency" and the yellow postcard.  From the conversation, which I was NOT trying to overhear a half mile away from them but couldn't miss due to the volume, they didn't have their card or proof of residency. I was actually glad to hear that because if they had their yellow card but had to provide proof when I didn't have to with MY yellow card and no proof, I was going to be pissed.


But when they didn't understand what she was saying, she got louder...and louder...and louder...

Again, I'm no Einstein....

but YELLING in English to someone who doesn't understand much English is PROBABLY not going to make them understand English.

Somebody stepped in and helped and they nodded and left....

Guess they get to come back and try it again tomorrow with all the others who got turned away. I felt so bad for them!

My attention was drawn back to my desk lady when she asked me if the information on my current license was still correct...that included height and weight...

(Damnit, this was the part I wasn't looking forward to because last time I got my license I had stretched the truth as well so I'm like two weight gains into a weight listed on my license).

In my defense, maybe I will lose those 3 pounds...and if I lost 4, I would actually weigh LESS than what was listed on my license...then what? I'm NOT going back to this ridiculous line to make my weight a pound less....well...maybe five pounds less but not ONE. ;)

SO I nodded in affirmation that it was...


I'm not proud of it. But it was necessary to avoid that long line again when I lose those four pounds. LOL!

I'm just trying to help the government out!

So we got done, I smiled for the camera, and she clipped my old license and handed me a paper printout and told me my real license would come in 60 days in the mail.

Damn....I wasn't in the clear yet to open my mouth, but even though I didn't have the actual license in my hand, I had to ask.

"So...I'm curious...why ask for proof of residency if the yellow card words for proof of residency since it was mailed to me at my address by a government agency?"

She smiled and said it was because some people go online and change their addresses to update it and any change of address would have to be verified.

I saw a lot of holes in that, but I didn't have the actual license in my hand so I shut up, thanked her and walked away.

And as I was walking away, a couple pushing a baby stroller stepped out in front of me. The wife said, "So...did you miss it..did they call you when we weren't here?"

The husband shook his head yes and said they had to go over to another desk to figure out what to do now.

The f-bomb may have been spoken by the mom...a few times.

I giggled and the mom turned around to apologize...

I told her I wasn't offended...

I understood.


I am now heading for that mimosa.