The California Department of Motor Vehicles is one of the many government agencies that is having to put up with short weeks (no Fridays or Saturdays) due to the huge budget deficit. Which means therefore that more people have to go in a shorter timeframe. It is also the school holidays, which I had conveniently forgotten.
I must admit I was still horrified when I got to the Santa Teresa office this afternoon and found it extremely busy as a result of such measures. However.. the folks who worked there were friendly and efficient. There was a long queue to get the application forms, but the man on the desk was patient and quick at the same time- even though I had to queue up twice, once to get the forms and a second time for him to make sure they were completed before he gave you a number. I sat down waiting for no more than 10 minutes, and then every step of the way was quick and easy- except for the test itself, and that was only because I took my time.
I had not realized that they were going to make me take the written drivers license test again as well as the motorbike test. Although I am very familiar with the rules of the road, they throw in some interesting curve balls: Did you know that it is illegal to smoke in the car when anyone under the age of 18 is in there with you? I had no idea, as I don't smoke, but I did guess that based on the very strict anti-smoking laws here in California that it would be the case, and I was thankfully right. The motorcycle test also had some questions I had not come across in my studies either but I guessed most of them correctly and survived the ordeal successfully passing both tests. Of course I had also not realized they were going to take a new photo etc too, so I will get an entirely new license in a couple of weeks! Hopefully it has reset the clock and I won't have to go back for another 4 years when it is time to renew once more.