I just booked a train ticket to one of our foreign offices. The process was fast, but confusing. At one point I got the impression that I had paid for everything, but gotten nothing. So I called a to confirm if I had a ticket.
The lady at the other end said “Hello. Yes. You have a non-changeable ticket; would you like to change it?”
Truth be told, I wasn’t totally happy with the ticket, so I said yes.
She said “You cannot.” I’m pretty sure I’d played this game before while trying to get my internet fixed.
“OK then, no, I would not like to change the ticket.”
She seemed happy with this answer. “That is good.” She said, “Now, we need you to confirm that this ticket is the one you want.”
“What if I say no?” I asked, sensing that I was close to falling into a French bureaucracy trap. This is a very dangerous thing indeed.
“You cannot, the ticket is already booked, you just need to agree that it is the one that you want so that you can have the ticket.”
“So then I have to agree? I cannot disagree?”
“That is correct.”
“OK, so I agree. But out of curiosity, why do you have to ask me if you already know the answer.”
“We have to ask so that we can issue the ticket.” She answered; appending a funny noise that hinted of ‘Duh.’
Oh, of course. Yes, I have definitely been here before. Fortunately, with experience comes the knowledge that this doesn’t have to make sense any more. With a ‘Oui’ and a ‘Merci’ I had a ticket. Maybe it’s not the one that I wanted, but C’est la vie.