Yesterday was quite instructive. Mrs Stiening needed to complete her name change. The first step of the process was to pick up the certified copy of the marriage certificate at the Mecklenburg County office, which went off without a hitch and the woman was very pleasant.
Step two in the process was to go to the Social Security office to file the name change. The Marriage license bureau informed us the SSA office closes at noon on Wednesday, which I didn’t know, but it was 11:10 and the office was maybe 15 minutes away.
Charlotte, a city of 800,000 people has only one SSA office. When we arrived, I dropped off the better half at the door since time might be an issue. I walked in from the car and immediately was confronted with TSA type security – 3 security guards and a metal detector and hand wanding. The female security guard made sure that my iPhone was muted. The Countess indicated she was told to empty her pockets and was rebuffed for declaring she has no pockets, and they demanded to examine the contents of her purse.
The Mrs was sitting in the bullpen with probably seating for 150 people in metal benches that would have worked well in a prison cafeteria. She had been handed a piece of paper similar to the tabs you get at the deli.
While we were sitting, I asked her how many cameras she thought were currently recording her. There were two ceiling panels that were askew for no obvious reason, and perhaps 6 visible cameras in the ceiling. When our number was called, we went to seat number eight, in front of a bullet proof glass window, with no person on the other side.
Eventually he returned, and was handed the marriage certificate and he started typing into the computer. Even though he was told the address on the marriage certificate was correct, he asked to be told our address, which he managed to get wrong two times.
Today or tomorrow, we get to visit the DMV so Mrs Stone officially becomes a tarheel.