today (actually in about an hour and 45 minutes) i begin my 24th year on this earth. i rang in my new year yesterday by successfully navigating my most major life management crisis to date (seriously). for the past 9 months i have been trying to get my maryland tags, and yesterday i finally succeeded. i chalk it up to not being able to take no for an answer, since my florida tags expire today.
the following is not for the weak of heart: mva hell story.
first of all, when i refinanced my car in february, the point was to get my title a) into my name only and b) up to maryland instead of florida. the bank only accomplished one of those goals, however, leaving me waiting to get something in the mail from the mva that i never got. so many many phone calls, faxes, and visits to the bank later, supposedly at the beginning of august i got my bank to send my title in. the end of august rapidly approaching, i called the mva yesterday morning to find out if they had received my title yet. yes! they got it on friday. thank heavens. so every time i go to the MVA (yes, it's been a fairly frequent occasion) the man at the information desk yells at me because i don't know what i'm doing. i avoid this man entirely this time and go straight to the titles line. fantastic! i get my application for transfer of title and a number. it looks like things are going smoothly.... (cue ominous music).
i sit down and look at my number - 154. i look up at the number they are serving now - 66. now, i have experience at the mva, and i know that that is about a 3 hour wait. i sit down to wait, and look at my forms. -scream- my inspection certificate is no longer valid, because everything has taken so damn long! i run out to my car and begin to look for little yellow state-inspection-site signs. the inspection takes an hour and a half-ish. but - you usually need an appointment. so i go to 6 or 7 places with a different combination of crying, begging, and offering to pay extra at each place. finally i find a place that says they might be able to get me in. i sit down to wait.
aw, hell. my car doesn't pass, because of the smushed bumper from where i backed into a brick wall (in gainesville) (two years ago). now, it passed the last time i had this inspection done, but the story i've given these guys is that i didn't know i had to do an inspection - not that i didn't know it would expire. so i can't really say anything. so panic panic panic. they finally agree to order the part, and fill out the certificate on the condition that i come in tomorrow (today) if the part gets in and have it fixed. hallelujah. it's been about 3 hours at this point, so i rush back to the MVA with my shiny new inspection certificate and look at the numbers....
156. i've missed it. so i run up and say i had to run out to my car and missed my number (the truth, but not the whole truth...) and they take me anyway, phew. it looks like i'm going to get out of here soon! (oh, i'm so naive.) well, since this whole shebang has taken 8 months to deal with, i'm well past the 60 day limit for the tax credit. they look up the value of my car, crunch some numbers... and tell me it's going to cost me about $1000 to get my plates. for obvious reasons, this does not make me very happy. so she sends me to the supervisor to see if i can get her to give me the tax credit anyway. she says she will if my title was printed up recently (apparently that is proof of the mixup i was trying to tell her about.) well, the supervisor can't find my title for about half an hour. turns out the first woman had kept it at her station. (thanks, first woman!) with that finally cleared up, she looks at the date and it's not recent enough for her. so she tells me i'm SOL. i cry (again). she tells me to call my bank and have them fax over a letter that says it's their fault.
this is where i am very glad i've been dealing with the same woman at BoA this whole time. i call valerie and cry on her shoulder and get her to promise to fax something over, but it will take about half an hour. the mva is closing, but they keep going until everyone who is inside is taken care of.
so i wait half an hour, no fax. 45 minutes, no fax. finally, as the last few people are being helped, the fax comes in. hooray! it is acceptable! they will only charge me $271 dollars for my troubles (that's the minimum... what the hell? this is another state, not another country.) i get my plates - i can hardly believe my luck. i leave with a headache, 6 hours after i got there, $600 poorer (remember, i have to fix my car, too). but i feel like i won the fucking lottery.
this post is now Too Long. i will finish my look back on being 22 in my next entry.