Sunday, August 28, 2011

Cadam Part 3...

This time thank goodness it wasn't me who had to brave the workers at Cadam, the main Prefecture.

James got a speeding ticket.  Crazy thing is we didn't know it until it came in the mail.  Just a bit over, but speeding none-the-less.  Soooooo, it seems that you have a time limit to pay the fine and you also get a point off your license.  But, the difficult part here, he doesn't have a French drivers license yet but the car is registered in France.  So, off to the main Prefecture he had to go.  

He had two things to do, change the address of the car's registration and change his license to a French one.  They're open til 2:30, he left at 11, so you'd think no problem in getting both done at the same visit.  Well, we forget sometimes that we live in France and everything takes 10x longer because everyone must have a job which means that each and every step is with a different person which also means another line.  Whew.  Example to follow.....

So first, J gets to the Prefecture and waits in Line #1 to lay out his reason for being there and for the Employee #1 to see if he has all the appropriate paperwork, ID, etc.  Employee #1 types madly into the computer, hands him some papers and sends him to Line #2.  Seems the change of address is free, but he still has to wait in Line #2 to "pay" and get a stamp that he's done so.  30 min later he is with Employee #2 who takes his paperwork, types some things into the computer, stamps his paper and sends him on.  Now, sitting in Line #3 he and the 42 people ahead of him hear a loud eerie sound and find that the entrance to the Prefecture is being closed by big black metal doors.  

A slight bit of panic is felt as everyone looks around at each other, unsure of what will happen next.  Nothing, except Employee #1 now closes the screen to her cubicle.  It's 1pm.  Wasn't this place open til 2:30??  Everyone sits quietly and patiently.  Suddenly loud banging is heard from the other side of the metal doors.  Ends up a guy went out to use his cell phone just before and is now locked out.  Sorry, too bad, you have to come back tomorrow.

Now, a woman is with Employee #3 and is getting into an argument because she's needing to change some paperwork for her husband but her husband isn't there in person; and on top of it the paper isn't signed by him.  So, the woman signs it for him.  Employee #3 tells her she can't do that, it's fraud.  The woman says, "Fine, take me to jail."  Much bantering goes back and forth, the crowd is on the woman's side.  The woman says..."but my husband works."  And the teller answers..."Madam, everyone works."  More bantering, and eventually she is asked to leave.  A few minutes later the police arrive and ask each teller if they called them.  Each say no.  Hmmmm.  

Then it's finally J's turn, he's the last person.  Address changed.  But, of course, he needs to come back to do the license part on another day.  Coz that's in another area with another group of Employees.  Tales to come, I'm sure!

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