SINning on Thanksgiving

My brief entertainment of taking off from work for the American Thanksgiving holiday ground to a halt with the arrival of this week’s notice from the road crew: today our water is to be turned off–all day.  And, oh by the way, best to turn off the hot water heater, too, lest it be sucked full of sludge when the water works under the street are tinkered with during this stage.

Instead of a day off, then, I decided to take on another federal bureaucracy by renewing my SIN card in light of now possessing a permanent residency card.  I had been told–with strange excitement on one bureaucrat’s part–that my new residency card will mean that my new SIN card will start with a whole different digit!

Canadian federal offices are so very unlike American ones that it is a kind of Alice’s rabbit hole experience to enter any of them.  Today, a beautifully mild Thursday (it is not a holiday here), brought many people out to wander the streets of downtown Dartmouth just before noon.  The elevator to the 5th floor of the building where the closest Service Canada office is housed was packed (The building also houses many medical offices). Service Canada, however, was virtually empty–two young men worked on self-service computers and the receptionist smiled at me from behnid her desk that was at least 25 feet away across a shiney, empty floor.

She checked me in–by name–and asked me–politely–to have a seat “for a minute.” Less than that minute had passed before I was rounded up–also sweetly–by the case worker who took me to ehr private office space and worked her way through a form that might have had as many as four lines in it.  She then produced my new number, smailed and wished me a good day.

A grand total of 15 minutes had elapsed–walk to and from the building included–when I got back to my desk, new SIN at the ready.

So, who cares that the house has no water, the office has been hit by someone with drill, my Facebook page has been hacked and all my American friends are eating pumpkin pie while here it’s butter tarts on offer?  I have a new-digit SIN.


3 Responses to “SINning on Thanksgiving”

  1. Jan Goldsmith Says:

    Even though you aren’t in USA, sounds as if you had things to be thankful for (for which to be thankful?) . . . one of them being that you aren’t in the USA having your water turned off during a day of marathon cooking and dish washing!
    We had a lovely T’day, with Al and Cam and the rest of the fam except for Meredith, who is toiling away on a paper that is due Tuesday. I applaud her priorities and miss her a lot.

  2. Jan Goldsmith Says:

    BTW, what is SINning? It must be an anacronym, and probably for something less fun than it sounds, but I cannot fathom what! Lack of imagination, I guess.

  3. carole leita Says:

    A Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a 9 digit number issued by the Canadian government that allows you to work in Canada.

    ever a reference librarian!

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