Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Patience is a Virtue

I have been on a dangerous and legendary journey known as Getting A Texas Drivers License.  Ya'll, what. a. hassle.  This all began 1 month ago when the hubs got pulled over for speeding.  We were informed by the lovely officer that it is Texas law that when you move here you have 30 days to get your cars all registered, inspected and get a TX license.  30 DAYS!?  I guess since we don't pay state taxes they have to get it from somewhere else. 

So there is where the journey began.  The Hubs has been awesome!  He got both cars inspected and then went through the arduous (and expensive) process of getting the cars registered.  So all that was left was for me to get my license (he got his last week).  Yesterday, I took off the morning from work to do this.  I had my social security card, my registration, my insurance.  What else would you need?

I pulled up to my neighborhood DMV bright and early at 8 am.  To my complete dismay I found a line of people wrapped around the building.  This building was so old and so small that we couldn't all fit in.  So we were forced to stand out in the blazing hot Texas sun for over an hour.  Ya'll it was 96 degrees and 90% humidity - it's dangerous to stand out in the direct sunlight in that weather for a long time, doesn't the Texas DMV know that they are located in TEXAS?  And there was no breeze. 

After I'd been in line for about 5 minutes, a DMV employee came out and started helping the first 5 people outside.  Then she decided it was too hot and went back inside.  So helpful.  One hot, sticky, sweaty hour later I made it inside.  I was drenched front head to foot in sweat.  My clothes were soaked through (yuck!), my hair a disaster, and my makeup was running everywhere.  The "helpful" DMV lady from earlier comes up to me to ask what I was in line for today.  I told her and she asked me for my birth certificate (why in the world would you need a birth certificate to transfer a drivers license?  why I ask you?!).  I told her I did not have one, but that my husband had received his license from that DMV last week without a birth certificate.  She said I had to have one.  Then I got a bit snippy and told her, "You know, this would have been helpful  information to have about an hour ago when I was melting in the sun outside.  I guess it was just too hot for you to do your job." 

Yeah, not Christian-like at all.  I said that, then turned and stormed out to my car.  I was a wreck.  I got in my car, started crying (because I knew I'd have to take the rest of the day off work to get this done, plus I was just hot ya'll - MISERABLE), and sped straight home for a shower. 

After I'd cleaned up and composed myself, I gathered said Birth certificate plus my passport (for good measure) and headed out to another DMV.  Thank God it was modern, big, and had AC.  I had to wait in one line for 30 minutes just to get a number.  Then, was told to take a seat until my number was called.  I sat for 45-60 more minutes.  Then they told me to get in another line.  I stood there for 30 more minutes and finally made it to the counter. As I stood in line I found out that this DMV was the only one in all of Houston, TX that you did not have to wait outside in the heat, which is why all of Houston was there yesterday.  REALLY TEXAS, REALLY?!  I don't ever want to hear another Texan tell me how much better Texas is than Louisiana because I will win that argument everytime.  EVERYTIME!

Anyway, 5 hours after I started my epic journey I walked out of the DMV office with, not a license, oh no, not in TEXAS, that would be too easy.  No, I was given a print out of my license and told that they would mail it to me in 2 - 6 weeks.  Again, REALLY?!  I never had to wait outside at a Louisiana DMV, nor did I ever have to wait more than 2 hours, and I always left the DMV office with a new drivers license.  What a concept.  I am very disappointed Texas, very disappointed. 

Ok, I've gotten that off my chest and I feel better now.  I hope you are all forewarned.  And if you live in Houston and have to go to the DMV go to the one on Dacoma off of 290.  Do NOT, I repeat, do NOT go anywhere else - you will regret it.

Anyone else had any terrible DMV experiences?  Let's share.


Meryl & Russell McLendon said...

I can totally sympathize. It took 4 trips to various Harris county DMVs before I got a license. The first time, no birth certificate. Rejection #1. Second time, DMV closed early for Christmas holiday... 4 days before Christmas! Rejection #2. Note, after this episode, my La license was officially expired. The third time, I was told that I had to retake the entire exam (written & driving) & that I'd have to make an appointment to take the tests. An APPOINTMENT! Rejected again, but I made the appointment. I arrived at the DMV at 6 o'clock, for my 8 o'clock appointment (as instructed) & barely passed the tests. Ridiculous!

Take note, Texas DMV, at the Port Allen, Louisiana DMV, I showed up with a yearbook & my LSU ID & got a driver's license. It took 5 minutes.

Sorry, this comment turned into a rant. =)

TheFancyFritter said...

Oh my! How horrible! I'm so sorry you had to go through that. I will never complain about LA DMV's after hearing that story! Hope you get your "real" license soon! :-)

Grumpy Pants said...

Tell me about it Fritter! But after reading Meryl's issues, I feel very lucky. And I'm with you, I'll never complain about having to wait at a LA DMV ever again.