this is the longest entry that i’ve ever write, so i write it on the separate page. click + more + to read the rest of this story, but be warned… it’s very long!!!

i lost my driving license around december 2001 (the month which i haven’t much time to write this journal). since i was too busy to get a replacement, today i finally had time to do that. if you know how the process of getting driving license in this country you will tell me that i was out of my mind when i decided to do it by myself alone without middle-man (or ‘calo’ in indonesian term). and if you don’t know how, you will know once you finish read this story.

i arrive around 10.50 at the driving license issuer office and gladly read the signage said “no middle-man allowed to enter this office!” and boldly went inside and a little bit proud looking at the security of the front door. i said “well, they secure it good enough now… cool”, man… i was wrong, dead wrong. when i was inside i have no slightest idea on how to get a driving license replacement, there is no information at all and the only information is how to get a new driving license. as i walked around and try to search for more information by asking someone the most answer are “could i help you with that sir?”, “let me do it for you sir” and “it’s only Rp.xxx with me sir”. hey! i thought no middle-man inside the building!!! damn.

well, i finally found the counter that said “counter 18. for lost, upgraded and transfer driving license” cool.. then i asked the police officer inside.. (after waiting for about 5 minutes ignored by this officer) then the answer really tip my head off “are you do this alone?” and i said “yes!” with proud tone. then he answer “well, then you have to had a medical checkup first”… huh? so what if i didn’t do it alone? did i need a medical checkup too? don’t think so eh?

i was at rage at that time.. damn it. what is this man playing for? okay.. after i cursed a little bit i walked to the medical checkup counter and register for rp. 5000 (that’s half of an american dollar… yes, our money is that cheap) and continue to the medical examination room. now things are getting more interested… you just sit, look at the alphabet across the room and said them correctly then you are passed the so-called-medical-checkup. that’s it. neat huh? you could get an eye examination for free outside but here you had to pay 5000 rupiah and your whole body is good enough to pass a medical checkup. where else could you find this kind of service?

after that amazing medical checkup i walked back to the counter 18. there i got yelled. why? because i only had my citizenship id, my report of lost items forms and the medical checkup passed form. whoa.. wait a minute officer, you said that this is what i need… and he said “where is the form! and put this on order!!!!” i almost yelled “what form? you miserable money leeching kind of police officer!” when i remember he is a police officer and i am at the police office which will sure guarantee my arrest, well after getting beat to hell for sure… =P i sulk down and walk around tried to find the counter that said “form”.

then i find it. and i walked in front of the counter and asked the police officer inside. and what do you know, this guy is more friendlier than the guy before. he said “oh, you should buy the form at the next counter and the insurance form too”. ok then, i walked to the next counter and buy the form for 52.500 rupiah (counting.. it’s about 5 bucks.. man.. how our money is so cheap) and buy the insurance form for 15.000 rupiah (u$ 1.5). then i filled them and walk back to the form counter and with a smile the officer take my two form and produce one more form for me to fill in and said “go to information counter and then counter 18 (again? man…)”. i filled them then go to the information counter and found out that the police officer there was more friendlier than his fellow officer. he said “lost your driving license eh? driving license is to be kept not to be lost!” and because he was smiling when he said that i know that he was joking and i just smiling weakly. then he help me to put the form in order and said “here they are in perfect order sir! go to counter 18 now”.

then i was back in front of counter 18 and those miserable police officer is nowhere to be found. good. then i put my form in the counter and the woman inside check them in the computer then said to me “well, now take back this form and go to second floor to the documentation counter”. ok mam!

then i went up to the second floor, looking around for the documentation counter then found it quickly. i went there and give my collection of form to the officer and said “lost driving license”. he took it and without looking just stamp my form and said “go to counter 18 (again? man.. this is getting tired)”. so i quickly back to counter 18 and give my form again. i waited about 3 minutes before the woman inside give me some kind of ticket and said “go to the photo counter”. all right! get your photo taken mean the process is almost over, that’s why i was so happy at that time. i was wrong…

i give my ticket to the woman inside the photo counter and she said “come in”. then i sit inside the cramped photo-taking room with about 10 more person. i count.. 10 people means at least 10 minutes here. i should not making any calculation here. it was 10 person inside the room but as the photo-session went on there are more people come and some of them are accompanied with a police officer and they got their photo taken before me!!! blah! some people are just came in with a police officer, talked awhile with the officer in charge then get their photo taken and went out the room. what kind of service is this??? well, after being pushed behind 8 persons or so i’ve got my photo taken. at last! then i looked at my watch, 20 minutes… damn it… lost 10 precious minutes… then the officer in charge said “take this ticket and wait for your new driving license at counter 31”.. phew, i was afraid he is going to say “counter 18” again… =)

counter 31 had a very big glasses waiting room and there sits about one hundred peoples. well, i was told to wait, right? so i wait…

at 13.00 my name was called and i walk to counter 31 where i gave my ticket and get my new driving license…. well done! it takes almost 2 hours and i was doing this by myself alone.

that’s my story for today… how’s your day?