I think the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, which may be called the Texas Department of Public Safety, may be the worst culture shock I've experienced in Texas. If I remember right, dealing with the Texas DMV, or whatever it is called, was the first time I thought to myself I've moved to a 3rd World country.
After what I went through today, to renew my driver's license, I can say the Texas DMV situation has worsened since I first experienced it.
One of the good things about a Texas Driver's License is it is good for 6 years. After 6 years you can renew your license online. You can not renew online after another 6 years has passed.
I don't remember how often I had to renew my Washington driver's license. I do know it was way more frequently than every 6 years. I also know that renewing my Washington driver's license was a speedy, painless, efficient, modern operation. And that was way back in the last century.
I'd been warned not to go the DMV near where I live, that being the one in Hurst, due to it being the busiest in the D/FW zone, with parking hard to find. I opted for the Texas D.P.S. Driver License Field Office in Arlington, near Veterans Park.
I arrived at the DMV parking lot, easily found a parking space. Finding the DMV entry, in the strip mall in which it was located, was not so easy. Eventually I found it, tucked in a corner.
I entered to find myself mortified by a line and a lot of chairs with a lot of people sitting in them. I asked the first guy I saw what the line was for. He told me you had to get in line to get your ticket to be in line to get your license.
Is this not the type thing the former Soviet Union was infamous for, with the long suffering Soviets waiting in long lines caused by the inept Soviet bureaucracy?
|Waiting In Line To Get A Ticket To Wait In Line|
So, I turned around and went back inside, eventually found my way to the end of a line that snaked all the way to the back of the office.
I told myself I'd make the best of this and that it'd make good blogging fodder. Eventually I reached the top spot in the line and got my number, which was 30. All morning long I'd been hearing the robo-voice call numbers in the high number range, like 794, 899. None in the double digits.
|After A Half Hour The Line Had Moved To Where|
I Could See The Lucky People Seated Who
Had Successfully Got Their Line Ticket
I entertained myself whilst doing the line waiting by having amusing conversations with my fellow Soviets. It felt sort of like those instant friendships you strike up when you are in travel mode, like waiting to get on a plane, or while in the air.
I finally exited the DMV around noon and headed to ALDI. The ALDI checkout lady politely asked how I was today. I said I was miserable. She laughed and asked why. I said I'd just spent 3 hours getting my driver's license renewed.
The ALDI checkout lady said she could not believe it the first time she experienced the Texas DMV. She'd moved from New Jersey, where, like Washington, getting your driver's license renewed is an efficient operation.
Even though I put up with this 3rd World backwards nonsense today, without complaining, til now, I wondered to myself, why do Texans put up with this sort of governmental incompetence? When people in other states, don't?
Does Rick Perry have to wait in line to get his driver's license renewed? How about Fort Worth Mayor, Betsy Price? Do, those who make the laws get to experience the Texas driver's license renewal experience? Does J.D. Granger have to renew his license the way us common folk do? Or does his Big Mama Kay somehow take care of that for him, like she does so much else?