Today Brittany and I went to get our FL licenses exchanged for GA ones. We met at the place and when I arrived Brittany was at one of the counters getting her new license. After she was done she said it only took a couple of minutes and cost $32 to get an 8 year GA license. After about 15 minutes my name was called and I told Brittany I would see her back at home.
Carried my small plastic sandwich bag (contents: birth certificate/license because I would otherwise lose them) up to Melissa at counter 12. She verified my proof of residency and took my identification card and began typing away. I tried to make small talk, but she was focused.
“Sir, you had a speeding ticket waaaaaay back in the day in the state of Georgia. Did you take care of that ticket?”
I’ve only had 2 speeding tickets in my life. Both of them were in the state of Georgia. While driving silver Neons.
Since moving here I have become very aware of the speed limit signs and more in tune with cruise control. Here is a quick story of the ticket she was referencing:
When I was 19 years old I traveled to Georgia to meet up with my friend Nick that I had met that summer. It was Christmas break and I was going to hang out with him for a few days. I invited myself up. He agreed. On the drive up I began to go much faster than was socially/legally acceptable. I was making GREAT time!!!
In Butts county I was pulled over. I looked up in my rear view mirror and saw a state trooper that looked like his car was almost out of control trying to catch up with mine.
“O.M.G.” was the thought that came through my mind. This was back in 2002 so I probably invented the whole initials thing.
Officer: “I clocked you going 99mph. And I know you were going faster than that, but it took me a while to catch up to you.”
I’m not going to lie. I was kind of proud. Almost blurted out with a grin, “actually it was more like 115mph sir!!!” Luckily I didn’t.
He gave me a ticket. It didn’t have the $ amount I needed to pay printed on the ticket. I asked how much it was and he laughed and told me to call the phone number at the bottom of the citation.
Ended up it cost $397. I immediately called Chick Fil A (which I had quit about 3 months prior to take an internship at a church) and asked to work again part time a couple nights a week. A few days later I had to call them back again to ask them to work 4 or 5 nights a week as the church I was working at was having some major issues and it seemed best to get out of there fast.
I paid the $397. That following summer I was in Ohio and my mom called and told me my FL license was suspended. I didn’t know I had to take an 8 hour course on driving as well as pay the $397. So I found a place in Cincinnati that offered the course for $85 and I sat in a room by myself watching videos all day with an instructor watching me. He had 2 rules: 1.Cell phones were to remain off and he held on to them. 2. No sleeping.
Also, the bathroom had a key that I had to borrow from him to use. Like some teachers in grade school this key was attached to something else. Instead of a ruler or an oversized key ring, it was attached to the spokes of a bicycle wheel. Imagine having 5 minutes to run down the hall and figure out how to position this wheel in just the right space to unlock the much needed bathroom.
FL license was reinstated after I paid around $250 to do so.
BACK TO TODAY:
“Yes mam, I took care of that ticket. It was the most expensive ticket ever.”
She informed me that in Georgia it was referred to as a Super Speeder ticket.
Again I was proud.
If you are under 21 years old and going over 20mph the speed limit, then it is considered a Super Speeder. And thus the incredibly high citation fine.
She also informed me that because of that ticket just over 9 years ago, my new GA license was suspended immediately.
She said she could see all the documentation that I had taken the 8 hour course and all, but I still did owe GA a fee to reinstate my GA license that I had yet to receive.
“Sure, how much is it?”
“$210. Plus the $32 to actually get the license.”
“What are my other options?”
“Not have a license.”
So I paid it. And my pride decreased.
Didn’t see that coming.