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Driving Life

Better late, then never.

After about 10 years, I have finally renewed my Learners license!

Best part is that it only took me 2 ½ MONTHS to get the yellow temporary piece of paper, well they send the real one in the mail!

On November 7th, I had the day off from work and figured “What the heck, let’s go re-new my learners”. So I set out for the closest ICBC licensing office. I waited in line, got a number, sat down and waited for my call number. When my number was called I talked to a lovely lady, I told her I was here to renew my much expired Learners.

Fact: It was 10 years old.

In order to pass, I had to take the knowledge test by answering at least 40 questions right, and do an eye exam.

I passed the knowledge test!

However, I did not pass the “Eye Exam”.

I’m sure you are wondering how I failed this eye exam. Well, first off, I wouldn’t call it an eye exam. After going to the optometrist for the better part of 23 years, I know what an eye exam is. That ICBC eye exam is not an eye exam.

Anyway, I’m sure the reason I failed this “Eye exam” is because of my glasses. Apparently you can do your eye exam with and without glasses. The person behind the counter asked me to do this eye exam with my glasses on. I did because I didn’t know you had the option to do it without. Although, due to my prescription, any close up, in my face flashing lights will throw me off. Guess what was part of this “Eye exam”? You guessed it, flashing lights. So I passed the written and failed the eye exam.

But fear not!

I could take a form (Evaluation of Visual Functions (EVF)), to my optometrist to fill out, and return it later that day or up to 30 days later. Too bad the optometrist that I have been seeing for the last 15 years was located in Kamloops.

In fact, I was located in a giant mall. The hunt for an optometrist who took walk ins was on!

I located one and got an appointment for 3hours later. Did I mention I was in a mall? Once my appointment was underway, I had a lovely man tell me that I have a lot of prism in my glasses. He also told me that I was his 4th EVF of the day and that this amount of prism would throw off any test that I took well wearing glasses. Thank you random mall optometrist for taking $91.00 and telling me information that I already knew.  FILL OUT THE PAPER WORK!  What should have been a 30min appointment was now taking an hour. When he did fill out my paperwork he made some mistakes and corrected them, signed it and sent me on my way.

Back the ICBC office to hand in this now dodgy looking EVF.

The only bright side to that day was the lady who was originally helping me, let me jump the line to hand in the paper work. “I’ll be right back I just have to get my supervisor to look this over”.

That’s when I learned this lovely little fact:
It needs to be sent into RoadSafeBC (RSBC) via FAX

Also, I would need to call them in one to two weeks to find out the next steps.

ONE WEEK LATER:

I called RSBC about the status of my EVF. Turns out they were processing everything from that day and to “Call back on Friday”.

Another ONE WEEK LATER:

I called RSBC about the status of my EVF. Turns out they have no paper work or record of me calling last week and that I should go back into the ICBC office I was dealing with and get them to resend it.

ANOTHER ONE WEEK LATER:

I have the morning off from work and head back to the ICBC office. I got in line, got a number, and waited for my number to be called.
Once my number was called I explained EVERYTHING thus far to the man behind the counter.
He then called RSBC and asked what the status was. The conversation went something like this:

ICBC: “I have a client in front of me; we would like to know the status of her EVF to renew her Learners.
RSBC:  “We have no records on our end of any FAX or paper work, did you send in the paperwork?”
ICBC: “We faxed and mailed you the original copy. We have nothing here; we sent it to you two weeks ago. All I have here is the client’s photocopied copy of her EVF”.
RSBC: “We need the original copy”.
ICBC: “Yes I understand that, but we sent you those by fax and e-mail two weeks ago. I’m going to fax over the photocopy copy and I’m going to stay on the line until you get it”.
The guy then told me to call them in a week to see what the status of my EVF was.

ANOTHER WEEK LATER:

I called RSBC about the status of my EVF and that call went like this:

Me: “Hi, I’m wondering about the status of my EVF?”
RSBC: “Yes, we have received it.”
Me: “Awesome, so what is the next step for me?”
RSBC: “Well the EVF is in line for review so until it’s up for review, it’s a waiting game.”
Me: “Ok, may I ask how long that may take?”
RSBC: “Well we are currently reviewing EVFs from June.”
Me:  “So you are telling me that I won’t find out until the new year if I can renew my LEARNERS LICENSE?”
RSBC: “yes”
Me: “OKAYBYE”.

At this point I was beyond frustrated and super annoyed with this whole processes. I had pretty much given up on renewing my license and taking transit until I died.

ANOTHER TWO WEEKS LATER:

I got a letter in the mail!

START THE COFFEE, CUE THE MUSIC, START THE PARADE!

The letter stated that I need glasses to drive! All I had to do was take this letter into the ICBC office with two pieces of ID and I’m ready to go. The only part about this that sucked was that it was now prime Christmas Shopping holidays at the mall and I figured I would wait it out. I hate the mall during the Christmas season.

TWO AND A HALF MONTHS IN

January 19th, I finally renewed my learners license

after waiting at the ICBC licensing office for an hour and a half.  The short of the already really long. Someone somewhere didn’t put all of my info into the box and they had to print 5 different temporary drivers’ licenses for me.

Plus side: I got to practice what my signature would look like on my ID!

Moral of the story:
Don’t let your license expire.