Aaahh-the rite of spring. No, not Stravinsky. The annual Port Washington rite of LIRR parking sticker renewals.

The many articles in the Port News, signs on the parking enforcement office, application forms, fliers...all state clearly "must have vehicle registration, driver's license, and a current utility bill." Nothing ambiguous there.

"I brought my bank statement...is that OK?" _"Car registration? I have this (from a man brandishing a copy of his window registration sticker). What's a car registration?" _"Can I use this (auto insurance form)?" _"Why do you have to check? Geez, I've lived here 15 years." (From a visibly irritated woman with a Roslyn mailing address)

And again "Why can't I use my bank statement?" _"I brought my paycheck stub." _"You need the registration? I have my license."

"No, I don't have anything with my address on it."

Throughout this spectacle, the staff at the office maintained a cheerful and professional demeanor. The folks in line less so, despite their typical Port appearance of NY commuter professionals.

Was there a longer wait than we might have expected? Yes.

Would following the clearly-posted rules have moved things along? Yes.

Happy spring!

Karen Hartman

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