Friday, December 31, 2010

Drivers License Day - Elder Mike Asher (we are very good missionary friends) and I thought we would get our drivers license recently. The Temple has a van and you have to have a Philippines License to drive or the church insurance won’t cover you, so why not. Pres Byram & Brother Saidy, a local member came and took us, we started at 9:00 AM and returned at 2:20 PM. Step one, we have to get the application (I think Bro Saidy took us to the head of the line) and then to get a drug screen. The drug screen place is a literal hole in the wall, The “Dr.’s” office was an 8’X8’ square and the lab was behind a 4’X8’ Sheet of plywood with a desk/chair and 5 stools to wait on, all in that space. At the end of a very narrow hall, in full view of the door, I had to walk sideways to get down it, was the …2’X2’ with a plywood door to donate your sample, to do your drug screen. The lady told Bro Saidy that I would have to take the drug screen in the hall because I couldn’t fit into the booth. BOY did I prove her wrong. The bottle was a reusable bottle with a piece of masking tape with my name on it to seal it. No sanitary conditions or accommodations whatsoever.

From here we had to step next door to another “Dr’s” office where we were measured for height and weight, blood pressure check and then stepped into the “office” for eye exam and evaluation. The eye exam was easy because she would say “read line E D F G L” so we would. When the receptionist called me up for my height measurement she pointed to a chart on the wall that was covered with fruits and veggies with their names printed underneath and I thought she said read them, so I did. Tomato, cucumber, apples, watermelon when she interrupted me to tell me to stand up agents the chart so she could measure me in CM. OH! OK so I did. The scales they use to weigh us were a WWII vintage bathroom scale. Several people was weighed on it after me and then a young lady stepped on it and said “OH this is way off” so she adjusted it and the last two guys were reweighed, we didn’t volunteer to be.

The blood pressure cup was wet from so many sweaty arms when she took my blood pressure, and then no sanitary wipe of the stethoscope, my blood pressure was off a little from what it was when I took it this morning. We wondered what the “evaluation was” so we looked at the medical form, “left arm, right arm, left leg, right leg, body normal, sight 20/20 in right eye and 20/20 in left eye – pass the evaluation check”. We waited in this office for about an hour for our drug test to come back. There was a back door and a front door access in this Dr.s office, both coming out of the reception/waiting area. The back door was open to an alleyway and the front door didn’t open to anything much better. But the whole time we were there, there was a steady stream of people taking the short cut through the Dr.s office. No way to distinguish medical personnel from non medical personnel – no one had any identification marks and the multipule people who showed us where to go was in and out and doing the exams themselves as well. One would slant down and one slant up when they measured for heigth their people, the window on the scales was so crusted over it was hard to read so we heard “about 69 kilos” and such.

Finally back into the lab for the drug screen results and we waited for about 15 minutes and then she said “smile” and there was a small camera on the desk hooked up to a computer to take your picture. Then she reached around the petition and pulled out an electronic finger print scanner to finger print me. Stamp, stamp, stamp, stamp, stamp, and then back to the place of origin, Across the street down the block through one building, out that one into another one only to arrive at about 11:55. The lady asked if we could come back at 1:00 because they all go to lunch from 12-1. There was time to turn in our completed application and then to have another picture taken and then another picture before everyone went to lunch. So we then went to lunch also. Back at 1:00 and we waited about ½ hour before they returned from lunch and start to work. First I had to go to the cashier and pay
P617.63 for the license and then back to sit down and soon another call and I picked up my receipt and license. Then back out of this building down the street and back to the mall where we left the van and back by 2:20. Success belongs to those who preserver.

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