Federal Government: Efficient or Inefficient?

(From a Facebook post about our visa application experience.)

Nation’s capital is a marvel of efficiency: From the apartment where we’re living (Oakwood in Falls Church), it took only 15 minutes yesterday to get downtown DC and parked for about $2. Walked a block or so to office we needed for processing of diplomatic passports and visas. Amazing.

Nation’s capital is incredibly inefficient: At office we needed, clerk told us, no, he could not look up on his computer whether my diplomatic passport had finished processing because he doesn’t have the right software, sorry. Mark asked, is it possible for the woman across the room who signed us in to check? Oh yes, the clerk said. She can. Had Mark not known to ask, we would have not known the passport was processed and ready for immediate pickup at that same office. (The woman who signed us in WAS efficient.)

Nation’s capital is capitalistic not socialistic: Right next to this office is a passport photo service for people who show up missing one of the photos they need and are rushed for time (such as, um, us). For a mere $27.44, that little Polariod can be yours.

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