I Need A New Card: My Trip to the Social Security Administration
How do you get a new social security card once you have lost yours? I don't know about anywhere else, but in the Washington DC area it is not easy! Somehow, when I moved back east, I lost my son's and daughter's social security cards. I thought I would have brought these important papers, but I guess I didn't. At least, I cannot find them.
When I was younger and I needed a social security card replaced, I called the Social Security Administration Office and requested a new one. I told them my number and they sent me a new card. However, this is no longer the case. Obtaining a new social security card for my daughter was like a bad dream. We even saw aliens!
She had researched what types of ID were needed. We thought we had it covered. We arrived at the Social Security Administration Building. After standing in line to check in for about 15 minutes we got to the front of the line. The woman in front of us was yelling at the person checking people in. "When are you going to call a 'C'! I've been here for hours, I haven't heard one 'C' called!"
At the front of the line, we told the woman why we were there. My daughter asked what type of ID would be acceptable. We thought we had brought every type available, we had birth certificates, school ID, all my IDs, our lease, and I forget what else. Lucky she had thought to ask, the woman said they would want her insurance card.
"Insurance card," I thought, "That's easy." I always had my insurance card in my wallet. I looked in my wallet...wait a minute, where was that insurance card. That's right, I needed to sign into my account and it was sitting by my computer at home. I told my daughter I didn't have it. The nice woman behind the counter must have seen her look. "Don't worry," she said, "You have time to run home and get it. There are 40 people in front of you."
She gave us our number "B336".
As we walked back out to the car, I thought about how nice the woman was to tell us we had time to run home. Hopefully we could make it home and back before they called our number. My daughter asked, "How will we know if they called our number while we are gone?" I told her we would just listen to the numbers when we came back. If they were less than our number we would be OK.
We rushed home, got the card and hurried back. We were gone for about 50 minutes. The place was packed when we got back. We went to an empty spot on the far wall to wait. A woman came out of a door and said, "B223". We had made it back in time! Suddenly we heard, "Are you ever going to call a C!" It was the same woman from before. She was sitting in the front row of seats. "I haven't heard a C yet! Are you ever going to call a C!" She sounded very annoyed.
We noticed some children playing. Three little boys and one little girl, seeming to range between the ages of 3 to 5. They amused us for a while. They found a spider which gave them worlds of amazement. None wanted to touch it or get to close, but they kept going back. The spider was in a corner next to the door to the only bathroom. The littlest one, the girl, started dancing in front of anyone going to the bathroom singing, "bug, bug, bug bug bug bug."
One of the boys finally got brave enough to step on the spider. There was a round of congratulations and celebration between the kids. Then they saw the fly. Suddenly it was "fly fly fly fly fly fly..." You get the gist. The boys started running around buzzing. The girl changed her song. At one point I smiled at one of the boys. He stopped dead in his tracks and told me "I'm a fly, don't smile! Fly, Fly, I'm a fly!" Then went back to buzzing around.
We had been there about 2 hours when a "C" number was called. Prior to this all numbers were "B's". The "C" woman was visibly amazed that her time had come. She stood slowly as if doubting what her ears had heard. You could see the realization come to her and she gained confidence. By the time she was on her feet she had her swagger back.
Suddenly the numbers called were preceded by "A", "C", "F" and "D". Needless to say we saw our wait increase. Where did all these other letters come from??!!
Later the boys started playing Transformers. Things got slightly rough, and Moms arrived to make the kids sit down. Oh no, what do we do now. We talked for a while, when suddenly a woman walked by with a very small, slinky red dress, red sling back heels, red purse, red toenail, red fingernails, lipstick and dark hair.
We watched the ripples as this woman walked towards the door. Little looks lead to double takes and full out stares. It seemed as if everyone was thinking the same thing, "where did SHE come from," and "what is she doing in Social Security dressed like that?" This woman was decked out for a weekend hot date, but was stolling along in the Social Security Administration Office.
We watched as heads turned and men stopped in their tracks, the looks up and down, and the open gasps of amazement. Then Red Riding had left the building. People looked back down to the floor and conversation resumed. We wondered where she had come from and how she came to be there! We decided she must have seen all the people entering and exiting and thought it was a bar. She left because it was too boring, no-one was talking to anyone.
Things got a little boring when suddenly guess who showed up. Red Riding was back! Conversation dimmed and glances glazed. She walked along the front of the chairs then took a seat on the far side in the back. My daughter and I wondered how she came to be there in the first place. Neither of us had noticed her when we came in.
About five minutes later, this very geeky guy came in. He looked like a bad '80's movie...pea green short-sleeved sweat shirt, red gym shorts, black socks and those silver velcro sandals. He went and sat next to Ms. Red Riding. Seems they knew each other and were friends. The extremely hot woman and the extremely geeky geek.
My daughter and I decided they were aliens. He had watched movies from the wrong era and she had watched "Pretty Woman". This premise entertained us for a while. Suddenly we heard out number, "B336". Hurray!! We went to our assigned window. I was pleasantly surprised. The woman here was also very nice.
So often you go to places where people deal with the public needing something all day and they seem very cynical. The woman at the window was very helpful and nice. What a pleasant surprise! I expected her to laugh at our insurance card, but she was happy. She took care of both of us at the same time, not even getting upset that she had to do the paperwork for two.
All in all, it was an interesting experience. We still wonder what the two aliens wanted. They were still talking when we left. It may have taken a long bit of time, but at least we had entertainment. I guess if you like people watching, you can have entertainment anywhere. All I can advise is if you need to go to get a new Social Security card, make sure you have someone you can laugh with while you wait.
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