The following is a transcript of the conversation between me (parked in the crowded lot of the DeKalb County Tag Office on a day that they were unexpectedly closed, and my husband an hour away in his office.) If you have no idea what I am talking about, get yourself up to speed here: https://missygoodnight.com/2019/06/26/illegal-truck-part-one/
Me: What is that supposed to mean?
My Son-of-a-Bitch Husband: It just means that I read something about them being closed today for maintenance, but…
S-O-B Husband: It said it might be closed on Thursday, it didn’t say for sure and…
Me: Oh well it is one hundred percent closed on Thursday, there is no might to it, and now we can’t drive your truck to Missouri this weekend and how are you going to tow a boat with my car and…
S-O-B: Hold on, hold on. Open the glove compartment and grab the registration.
Me: Okay, what now?
S-O-B: When does it say it expires?
Me: June 15th.
S-O-B: Oh, okay, so we are good we…
Me: ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?! I had until June 15th to get this shit done?! I have been running around like a crazy person trying to, OMIGOD, Imma need to let you go…
S-O-B: Babe, listen I…
So, yeah. The tags had a 15 day grace period because North Carolina is amazing and I love them and what the hell is up with my husband? Piece of shit, ratchet-ass, you know what I’m going to move on.
So, we drive his truck to Missouri and all is well. We plan to get back to Atlanta on the 31st, which means we can go on the first to the only tag office that is open on Saturday and get the tags switched. I breathe a sigh of relief and accept his apology.
On Saturday June 1st we wake up bright and early and head to Gwinnett County to the one open tag office in the state of Georgia. On the way over I say something like, Do you think we have to go to the county we live in to get the tags? And my husband says, No that would be dumb. Mind you, we have to get the tags today because my husband is flying to Baton Rouge on Monday.
When we get there the line is wrapped around the building. There are double drive through lines and it is hot as shit. We stand in the outside line for about twenty minutes, then I am like, you know what, I’m just gonna go call someone and ask about that county thing. So I walk off to investigate the rules (which apparently my husband has already done quote, extensively). My nervousness makes him nervous, so he has Jackson walk up to the door to read the 85 signs plastered on it and one of them says, “You can only buy tags in the county in which you live.”
So thirty minutes later I am eating a taco made of chemically-engineered beef at Del Taco while expertly giving him the stink-eye.
When we get home my husband does some more research and comes up with this plan: On Monday morning, I will drop him off at the airport at 8:00 am, with the kid and dog in tow. Then I will head over to the DeKalb County Tag Office again, this time with my passed emissions test and all my correct paperwork and I will buy the tags. This is fine because I am also on the title. It is an And/Or Title. I agree, but I feel like something isn’t right. I ask him about three more times over the course of the weekend if he is sure I have all I need. Yes, he knows for sure. He has checked. Again.
Monday morning I battle my way through the morning traffic in Atlanta, then back again to my side of town. I get to the Tag Office to a line out the door. It is 8:07 am. I leave the kid and dog in the car with the air on, because once again it is hot as shit, and neither of them want to be where they currently are. Neither do I. I am nervous about leaving them in the car across the street from the county jail, but I push on. Not a lot of options at this point.
I get into the building by 8:35 am. By 8:45 I have a number. M347. They are calling M117. Awesome. For the next hour I pace the floor, peaking out the window to see that my car with child and dog in it are safe and sound, until the police officer tells me, Ma’am you really need to have a seat. I do not have a phone on me, because my son left his phone at home and I left my phone with him so he had one just in case.
At approx. 10:00 am my number is called. Hallelujah! I run up to the window and give the lovely woman all my paperwork, my DL, and a big smile. Though I am not feeling confident.
Lovely Woman: Hello, Mrs. Goodnight. How can I help you today?
Me: I just moved to Georgia and I need to get my tags switched.
Lovely Woman: I can help you with that.
She starts rifling through my paperwork.
Woman: Okay, so in Georgia we require a Title Ad Valorem tax of 7%, are you aware of that?
I tell her I am aware of that, and then I sigh, because this might actually be happening.
Woman: So you will need to pay $700 today in order to get your tags, okay?
Me: Great. (Not really great, but I don’t care anymore.)
Then she starts shuffling papers on her desk, highlighting notes, and clicking on her keys.
Woman: Does anyone have a lien on this vehicle?
Me: Yes, Wells Fargo is our lien holder.
Woman: Okay, so they need to fax a copy of the title over to me. Which isn’t a big deal, it just usually takes a few minutes.
Me: Okay, um, I think my husband filled out the title form, which…
Woman: Nope, still need the title.
Then she looks around me.
Woman: Where is your husband?
Me: Uhh, on a plane, I say.
Woman: Georgia is not an “And/or” state. Georgia is an “And” state. If you want tags today your husband has to be present.
Woman: Unless! You have a power of attorney?
Woman: Okay, Mrs. Goodnight (she starts to hand me all my paperwork back). You need to get a power of attorney and it needs to be notarized and…
She keeps talking but I shut down and have no idea what she is saying. I walk out to the car where I am met with a, Guess what, Mommy! The airport was so crowded this morning with summer travelers that Daddy missed his flight. Haha! That’s pretty funny, huh? Cause he could have come here with us! Anyway, here is your phone back! You were in there for way too long, I’m hungry.
This was June 3rd. Two weeks before tags officially expire. Husband is gone all of that week. On June 8th he comes home for one day. On June 9th we all pile into my car (with valid tags) and drive to Baton Rouge for two weeks. We get home on 23rd. On June 24th I take husband to work and drive back home because I have an appointment. Husband says we will get tags on Wednesday, that is when he has a free morning. On Tuesday he calls Wells Fargo to get a copy go title faxed. They say we should have it by Friday. Le sigh. It is not a ten-minute wait time for title.
And here we are. June 26th? Yeah? I don’t know anymore. We have no tags. No title. No patience. And I am still mad as hell that we have to pay $700 to the state of Georgia, especially because we already paid taxes on this truck.
So what is the point of all of this? There is none. Except maybe don’t move to Georgia? Or maybe don’t put shit off? Or maybe it is possible for your smart, wonderful, husband to be an S-O-B sometimes? Or maybe trust your gut? Or maybe sell all your vehicles and ride your bike everywhere you need to go? Maybe ride your bike up into the Tennessee mountains? Maybe find an abandoned log cabin and start your life anew? Maybe live as a hermit in the Smoky Mountains for the rest of your damn life with 18 feral cats and one goat that thinks you are his mom? Maybe?