Today I officially became a Louisiana citizen. At least, I think so. Anyway, I got a Louisiana driver’s license and registered to vote, so I think that makes it pretty much official.
I would have gotten my driver’s license a few weeks ago, when Tim got his, but I had to unpack and locate my required forms of ID. To transfer my out-of-state license, I needed a certified copy of my birth certificate, my social security card, and my Michigan license. I had no problem locating my Michigan license and I even knew exactly where my birth certificate was (in the documents folder with birth certificates and social security cards for everyone else in the family). However, I haven’t seen my social security card for months. I didn’t know where it was when I packed up and moved down here – I just kept hoping I would stumble upon it. But, I needed that card to get my license.
I finally broke down and printed out a form on-line to get a replacement social security card. Of course, I have no idea where the Social Security Administration building is here, plus, I needed each of my parent’s social security numbers and a lot of other information I didn’t have handy. So, I broke down and opened the remaining 4 boxes we have yet to unpack, said a desperate prayer, and sorted through those. No luck. Finally, I removed our bill basket from the file cabinet (I haven’t hung it up yet), and dumped it out on the kitchen table. It needed cleaned out anyway. I sorted through the bills and other miscellaneous stuff and there, buried under expired Meijer coupons, several years worth of Michigan fishing licenses, and old bills was my social security card. I now had everything I needed to get my license.
This morning, Tim and I set off for the DMV. Tim went with me because the DMV for our parish is hidden in a part of Bossier City that I have never been in and he felt that I really had no chance of finding the building without getting really lost and/or really irritated. Not harsh, just true. I’m still pretty lost here. It is about 40 minutes from our house to the DMV. Some of the sights we pass on the way there include Greg Tilly’s Mobile Homes (Home of the King Kong Triple Wide), The Repo Depot (owned by Greg Tilly and selling a wide variety of repossessed homes and vehicles) and Halliburton (yes, that Halliburton).
I should say here that the nice lady who helped us open our new bank account told Tim and I that the Louisiana DMV in our parish has really gotten better about getting people in and out. Also, when Tim went to get his license a few weeks ago he was there for less than 20 minutes. Ha!
When I got there, I had to check in and get a number from the information desk. Only you are not assigned a number based on when you walk in the door. You a given a number based on what you are doing there. For instance, I was getting a driver’s license, so my number was C213. There were numbers starting with letters A-I for various other transactions. When I arrived, the first C number that I heard called was C209. I figured that meant I wouldn’t have to wait too long until it was my turn. Ha again! There was apparently no rhyme or reason to the order in which numbers were called. People with A or E numbers would wait for about 5 minutes and then get called up to a service desk. Conversely, 40 minutes went by between C210 and C211.
After almost 2 hours my number was finally called. The remained of my visit was uneventful (thankfully) and I walked out the door 10 minutes later with a brand new, Louisiana driver’s license. I don’t have the ability to scan in my license to show it to you, but the picture is actually not half bad. Instead, I will share this picture, which sort of summarizes my feelings after spending most of my day at the DMV.