156 - Driving Licence - Slow

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Mine is a fairly strange case.  I was born in England so I have a European passport.  But I grew up in Australia. So all of my papers are Australian.  This seems to cause a whole lot of confusion. Take, for example, the case of my driving licence.  I found some seriously conflicting information about how you convert an Aussie licence to a French one and realised that a trip to the prefecture was on the cards.

Once there, I hand my papers through the slot, thinking that this all seems a bit easy! Well, it wasn't long before the bubble burst! I was politely informed that my papers couldn't possibly be taken - I had filled in the form in blue pen, not black!  And I wasn't even in the right place...  All things concerning driver’s licences are dealt with in St Paul.   I took another application, reminding myself to fill this one out with a black pen, and headed back to St Paul... only to be told that all things concerning driver’s licences are dealt with at the prefecture in St Denis!!  AAAhhhhh!

Back in St Denis and I'm determined to get this sorted out! I hand over my papers and, upon seeing my Australian licence, the lady asks me for my visa. This is where it gets interesting! I explain I don't have a visa as I am English by birth and have a European passport. "Where is your British driver’s licence?" she asks.  I explain that I left the UK when I was 11, so I don't have a British licence... "But, why not?" she asks... Uuummm, 11 year olds in the UK don't get driver’s licences!!  She seems to think this is quite strange, but finally accepts it!

20 minutes later and she suddenly "realises" that this is all pointless and says that I don't need to change my licence at all!! It's fine for me to use my Australian one.  Unbelievable!! So all seems well.

That is until I was pulled over by the cops for a random check. The prefecture was right... I can use my Aussie licence... But only for 6 months!! So now I have to head back to St Denis to start the whole process from scratch!!

 

Vocabulary

 

to grow up = grandir

to seem = sembler

conflicting = contradictoire

Aussie = Australien

a trip = un trajet

 

on the cards = inévitable

slot = la fente

to burst = éclater

politely = poliment

to fill in = remplir

 

to deal with = traiter

to sort out = résoudre

to hand over = donner

birth = naissance

strange = bizarre

 

pointless = inutile

to be pulled over = se faire arrêter

cops = les flics

to head back = retourner

from scratch = de zéro

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