The happiest DMV in all the land

“You live in Shakopee?” The woman with Mondovi hair and white, shiny teeth behind the counter of the DMV asked me.
“Yep,” I said.
“What brings you out here?”
“I used to live in Prior Lake.” I paused for a minute while I tried to remember how to fill out a check. As I was signing my name I was convinced I had done it wrong. “I come here because it’s the happiest DMV on earth.”
She started to laugh and so did two of the other ladies sitting at desks behind the counter. “Why?”
“Whenever I come in here it’s not very busy and . . . ”
“Oh we get busy,” she said.
“I know I made the mistake of coming in here once right before the fishing opener. But everyone who works here is always so happy and seems to be having a lot of fun. It’s worth going out of my way not to deal with crabby people.”

She then went on to quiz me about where I work, what kind of writing I do, why I moved from Prior Lake, the pronunciation of my last name, and then told me about her co-worker (who was talking about having to buy herself a pie for Mother’s Day) who just bought a new truck and she used to drive a Cadillac. You would think that I was there for an hour, but she just insisted on getting the exact right driver’s license picture for me.

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  1. Don 31.May.08 at 8:48 am

    Sounds like it was worth the drive. Our DVM is pretty cool too, for a largish city. One Saturday morning I had two errands: renew my license and replace my lost ATM card. The DVM treated me with kindness and respect. The bank? Like a criminal. I wrote a humor piece about it but nobody laughed…evidently it’s a universal experience.

  2. UH 31.May.08 at 5:48 pm

    “She then went on to quiz me about where I work, what kind of writing I do, why I moved from Prior Lake, the pronunciation of my last name…”

    I am puzzled. What possible pronunciations could there be for your last name? Throatwobbler Mangrove?

  3. Jodi 31.May.08 at 5:59 pm

    Some people pronounce the Ch like in cheese. And some people inexplicably pronounce it with a sh sound. And then there are the people get the hard K, but use a short O and add an L before the ey. It’s as though the totally miss that chrome is the root of the name.

  4. Jodi 31.May.08 at 6:00 pm

    Also, whenever anyone asks me about my last name I feel like I should tell them I was St. Martin until I was five, and that my biological father’s last name is Bush.

  5. Sornie 03.Jun.08 at 9:18 am

    I remember that DMV office. The Shakopee one in the court house was a zoo yesterday with a mom trying (but failing) to control four young kids who used the line of waiting people as an obstacle course.


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