Thanks for stopping in to read the second part of “The Not So Warm Welcome – Justin Bieber, We Blame YOU”. In the first part, I shared some of the struggles of our journey and in this second part, I’m sharing some more. We prepared for this journey as best as we could, but we discovered along the way that there are things that you just can’t prepare for. And yes, Justin Bieber is still to blame…
John and I had 30 days from the time we entered the US to get new State driver’s licenses. I spent a morning at the DMV office in person to ensure that we are taking the appropriate steps. I get our booklet to study, find out appointments to write the exam are first come, first serve, and so, on Saturday morning, we drive over an hour to a suburb to write our exam. We get to the DMV on Saturday morning prior to the office even opening and the line is outrageous. The kind of outrageous line that curls around the building outside.
When we finally make it inside the building and to the front desk, we proudly tell the lady that we are there to write our exams. She tells me that I’m not allowed to write. But John writes and passes, yay!
The lady tells me that I have to make an appointment to write for mine. So I say “okay, let’s make an appointment.” Not that easy. She gives me a phone number that I have to call first thing in the morning in order to get an appointment. Every single morning I call the number. Every single morning. My record was calling 62 times in one morning. Naturally, I couldn’t get through and of course it’s impossible to actually speak to a person. I call in the afternoon to find out how this game works, and I find out that there is a three month waiting period and you have to have lived in Illinois for at least 12 months prior to even write the damn exam.
That was the toughest part for me. And no, my Canadian license and insurance are no longer valid, I tried to make that happen every which way possible, but it just doesn’t work that way. Sweet talking only gets you so far in life I suppose.
We Have Made People Quit Their Day Jobs
Now, I’m not entirely sure we can take all the credit for this. But it’s true, two people have upright quit their jobs as soon as they started to get entangled into our tango dance. Our situation is so complex, it seems as if nobody we encounter has ever dealt with our situation before. Nobody knows what to do with us! The way that most Canadians move to the US is that they stay with their same employer or they are not deciding to actually LIVE in the US and still technically live in Canada. But not us. John changed employers and we technically are not living in Canada presently. This complicates things to a whole new level that we were not aware of until we were in the midst of things. Apparently, from a business perspective, this is really complicated as well. We had the US auto insurance lady quit leaving us high and dry, and then also our international tax accountant quit leaving us higher and drier. Neither knew how to answer our questions, nor did they point us in the direction of someone who may be able to actually assist us. They clearly didn’t want to get tangled into our web. I don’t blame them, I would have quit as well.
Now, Canada, you haven’t exactly been Mr. Perfect either over there, so don’t be too smug…
Here are just a couple of Canadians struggles we’ve been dealing with:
Our mortgage payments were still being withdrawn from our Canadian bank account even after all the legal docs where signed, sealed and delivered. John called the bank with which our mortgage was through and the lady on the phone didn’t believe that John was who he said he was, so she wouldn’t talk to him. He passed all the security questions and secret passwords and everything, but she thought that he was lying for some reason. That’s annoying.
So I called and the lady I spoke to tried to blame our lawyer as being the reason why money was still coming out of our account. So we contacted our lawyer who tells us that there’s nothing on his end that would affect that. So I call the bank back and finally, I get to speak to somebody who actually wants to help us. And yes, I was friendly and polite before (I’m still Canadian after all). So, I spend two hours on the phone with this lady who admits that they have no idea why money is being taken out of account, etc, etc but our money will be returned to us in 30 to 60 days.
It’s sure funny how they are really good at taking money out of your account, but not so quick in returning it to you.
Canadian Security System
Oh Goodness. Where to begin… essentially, when we found out we were selling our home, we were told by our security system that we had two options to terminate our contract:
1) Pay it out
2) Transfer the contract to the new buyers
We ended up transferring the contract to the new buyers, but wouldn’t you know it… money is being taken out of our Canadian bank account again for the month of May. We moved in mid-April, which is when the contract was transferred. We get into contact with the security system and tell them there was an error on their end and to please credit the money back to us.
After probably at least 75 emails, we still to this date have not received our money back. This company is worse to deal with than the US utilities company (mentioned in Part One)…their customer service is the absolute worst. And at this point, we don’t care about the money anymore, it’s simply the principle. Just recently, we receive an email from the company with a PDF attachment. We open the attachment assuming that finally we are somehow getting our money back… only to find out that they HAVE SENT US A $100 INVOICE FOR NO GOOD REASON AT ALL! Seriously…. Good thing we’ve kept all of the email correspondence.
Those are just a few things that we have dealt with that we didn’t expect would occur. There are more, but this has turned into an essay. If you are still reading, thank you, my lovely. I like you. You are the greatest reader of all time.
Keep in mind that this all happened in a really short amount of time and it was so overwhelming and stressful that we questioned if what we were doing was the right thing…. But I remember one of the last things my Dad told us before we left was “if you’re going, you’re going to make it work. There’s no other option”. And that has stayed in the back of my mind like glue. We are making it work and we hope that one day we look back and find humor in our tales. But not yet, it’s still too soon.
It also didn’t help that around this time, almost 80% of Americans we spoke to who found out that we moved from Canada asked us “Why?” And at that point, how do you answer such a question when you are asking yourself the same question? Now that the dust has settled, I can answer that question more confidently. Everytime we are in a store and we see how inexpensive beer and vodka is, John and I look at each other, smile, and say “ahh this is why we moved… this makes everything worthwhile”. And then we purchase a Fred Flintstone sized bottle of vodka for under $20 and life is good again. Hey, it’s not like I can drive anyways!
As always, thank you for reading! The greatest compliment of all is a “follow” or “share”, and I appreciate each and every one that I get, so thank you in advance, my lovelies!