I've bitched for the last twenty years or so that ever since this country went to a "service economy" about the only thing we don't have is service. However, I've noticed a change in the last year or so. The worst offenders in the past were always the license branch and the unemployment office. The unemployment office was without a doubt the best/worst. Fortunately, the last time I had dealings with them was close to twenty years ago. I went to sign up figuring it would only take an hour or so. Seven hours and much humiliation later, I was all set to go. At least for two weeks. Then I had to go back in and put up with some more humiliation while waiting my turn in line. It struck me odd that you had to come in to sign up in person which required a 20 mile drive one way. If you are unemployed, I can see them making you waste a day. And God forbid it's your turn at the window when the clock strikes 10:00 because it's break time no matter if you're in the middle of a sentence. Of course, what else have you got going on. You're unemployed after all. But the expense of driving? They should have been slapped for that.
The license branch was basically the same thing when I first started driving. It's much better now. Of course you can't actually renew your driver's license or license plates there now. You have to do all of that online. It's pretty easy but I sure miss the old days of taking a number and waiting four hours only to be told that you needed to have a police check on the VIN number before they could do anything else. So you got that done and then repeated the stand in line thing on your next day off. I always liked the fact that they wouldn't take a personal check, as well. What, they figure you're giving them a phony address on your driver's license? If the check bounces, send the cops to the house and take the driver's license back and the plates off the car.
But now? Service with a smile is making a comeback. I lost my pedometer they gave me in rehab (nice people there, by the way). I was pretty sure it fell out of the truck along the driveway but I walked up and down it a few times and never did locate the thing. I bought a new one and it worked for about three months and then started losing steps. I went online to the ACCUSplit website and contacted them. They sent me out a couple of new batteries free of charge but it still wouldn't work. I contacted them again and they said send it in and they'll fix/replace with a 48 hour maximum turn around time. I sent it out yesterday, so I should be seeing it some time at the beginning of next week. Mr. Pedometer is all about service or so it would seem. As a side note, Surly and I were walking down the driveway Christmas Eve and he found the one I had lost. Sharp eyes on that boy.
As long as I'm handing out the compliments, I should mention the Indiana State Teachers Retirement Fund. When I started going through the motions signing up for my pension, I figured this would be like dealing with the license branch or unemployment office - same state after all. Not at all like that, I'm quite happy to report. Very friendly, efficient and their phone system only has you tied up for a little while. Whenever you finish your business, they always ask if there is anything else they can do for you. Always a pleasant experience.
And just one more. Lazy Boy replaced the guts on my recliner at no charge. Not even an installation charge. This was on a chair that was about 12 years old.
So there you go. Another satisfied customer.