Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Driver's License Saga

Several weeks ago I took all three boys with me to Urgent Care for a Dr. to take a look at Stephen. At that visit they asked to see my driver's license and Stephen's Insurance Card. Three boys in a germy waiting room need a considerable amount of supervision (Stephen wanted to get down and crawl so he's doing a turning routine on my lap, Daniel's checking under the chairs for chewing gum, Allan is staring at the girl next to him making her very uncomfortable). When they handed me my cards I pushed them somewhere into my diaper bag and resumed organizing the three ring circus.

Fast forward one week: a nurse comes to our home to do some blood work and needs to see my driver's license. They are not to be found anywhere in the recesses of that diaper bag. Three days later: I have called to make sure the Urgent Care hasn't found them, I've checked at the store's I've shopped but no sign of either the license or the insurance card. I begin to look in earnest and remember that I had library books in my diaper bag that fateful day that I've already returned to the library. Could it be that in pushing the license into the diaper bag they went in a book that has been reshelved at the library? A call to the library tells me that their system keeps no record of past books checked out unless there is a fine due on that book. We went to the library and tried to scour as many books as we could remember that we'd checked out with no success. So I decide it's time to replace my license. Easier said than done.

Fast forward two days to a Monday: I'm getting ready to go to P&G for a study, they need to see my license as identification and I remembered that Philip had a scanned copy of my license for insurance purposes. I print it off before I go and as I am putting it in my diaper bag I notice (since it printed full page) that the license expired on my birthday! So it's really a good thing that I lost them or who knows how long it would have taken me to notice that piece of information.

Tuesday morning we packed up and made a trip downtown to get the license replaced. We drove around the block 15-20 minutes before a parking spot opened up, I unloaded all the guys and we walked into the office. The first thing I see is a sign saying they do not accept credit cards: cash or check only. So I turn the brood around and we walk to an ATM machine to withdraw the $24 that I need (of course you have to withdraw $40 because of only doing denominations of $20). We walk back to the office and get in line again (I'm beginning to wonder if I've put enough money in the parking meter). When I reach the teller she says that because I've lost the license I have to have my Social Security card (I did) and my birth certificate (I don't usually carry that around with me!). So writing down everything I need we come home to search the house for that piece of paper that verifies I was born....no success. So I placed an order the next afternoon to get a copy. In the meantime, I'm carrying around a photocopy of my old, expired driver's license and the order confirmation for my birth certificate. Some policeman I know would want to hear that story should it be necessary!

I received the birth certificate last Saturday so Monday morning I packed everybody into the van and we trekked to downtown again. Allan prayed on the way that we'd be able to quickly get a parking place that was close. His prayers were answered and we parked directly in front of the building....actually there were quite a few open slots. Everyone piled out of the van and we walked to the office to find it locked with a sign on the door saying, "Closed for Columbus Day". We went home.

Tuesday everyone piled in again and we made another trip downtown. This time after the third time around the block the gentleman who had washed my windows the day before (I gave him my extra parking meter money) helped me to get a parking place. The boys knew their way to the office by heart and we got in line. As the teller is helping me get a new license it comes up on her computer screen that as of Oct 1st there was a new policy instituted that if your license has been expired for more than 7 days then you have to pay a $20 fine. I had the $40 withdrawn two weeks before and now the $24 license fee takes me $4 over that limit. So....back to the ATM machine we walk to withdraw another $20! Side note: I carry NO cash downtown because when I get stopped by a panhandler I can honestly say that I have no cash on me.

We walked back to the office with the money, the camera took my picture and we waited for the finished product. When Allan saw it he said, "Mommy you don't look very pretty...you should have smiled." For some reason I wasn't really feeling like smiling.....someday I'll look back on this experience and laugh ....but right now I'm going to program google calender to send me a week's notice in four years that there is a very important item I need to pay attention to.


skier1998 said...

So sorry to hear your saga. My license expired on my b-day (only the end of September) and I happened to notice it by chance. I thought last time I received something in the mail but apparently not. I went online and read up on the fees etc but have yet to make a trek to the office.

Phew - I am tired just reading.

coffeechica said...

Oh wow! Insane I'd say!! I had to smile reading it but I'm sure there was no humor involved at the time!!

Raylin said...

I had to laugh only because it sounds like something that would happen to me... and it's so funny that your little guy reprimanded you for not smiling! Life is so easy when you are a kiddo! :)

David & April said...

My license is currently expired too! The day after my bday! I have the photo card, I just have to go get my picture taken! Quite a story!

David and Sarah Fry said...

Love it. I can so relate to the ins-and-outs of a bunch of little ones in car seats. We don't "run" anywhere. It's a major deal with 4car seats. Great story.

Char said...

You dear girl -- how I remember those days with four wonderful tag-a-longs, car seats, strollers, etc....this to shall pass...and yes, you will smile.
So you know for 4 years down the road --- Red Bank Rd. has a license bureau with plenty of parking... :)

Andy, Dixie, Carson and Kenzie said...

Wow, that is crazy! I will admit, your story did make me smile. Hope you guys are all doing well!

Joy said...

Thanks for the laugh! I, too had to laugh because it sounds so like my life. A quick trip to town with 4 younguns in tow is anything but quick. Now I need to go check my license to make sure it's not expired! LOL! Marianne, you need to write a book. I would buy it for sure! Really enjoy your blog!

Faithe said...

I'm all out of breath....reading this saga gave me a work-out. I felt like I was running after you each day as you once again faced another challenge. So interesting, though. I'm glad you FINALLY have a current license~!
Hope to see you soon.