That Passed Quickly Enough

So, series 63 exam day. I woke up early (five in the morning), got prepared, and was off to the MRT station (beating out the usual crowds) and Makati soon enough. I got to the Prometric testing center (at Ateneo Business School, right beside the Saudi Embassy) a little too early though, so I had to wait a bit at the parking lot with other test-takers (for other exams), though we were eventually called in, one at a time, presenting our IDs before the guard allowed us upstairs.  There each of us signed in, wherein we were assigned a locker to put our stuff in.  

Knowing what to expect, I emptied my pockets, took off my belt and jewelry, put them all in my bag, then put that into the locker, and then settled in for the wait.  

The waiting area was filled soon enough, with my classmates from the series 63 class (at least, those who were scheduled for eight in the morning) joining me in the wait. I quickly learned that a good chunk of the other folk there were taking qualification exams for the Middle East (specifically Quatar and Saudi Arabia).

I found it funny how the exam we were about to take was apparently the shortest with regards to the time allotted to finish — an hour and fifteen minutes — especially compared to all the other exams (which I gleaned via listening in to the pre-exam briefing the proctor was giving to each segment of people sitting at the waiting room.  For example, the Middle East-going folk’s exam was four hours long, while there were two there taking eight hour-long exams. Yikes.

In any case, we were shuffled into the testing room two at a time (after having our credentials checked and recorded, and our pictures taken). Once we sat down though, we were expected to begin as soon as we were done with the tutorial.

In all, I think I used up about an hour and seven minutes of the total time allowed for the exam, and this after going back and double-checking fourteen flagged questions. In the end though, I passed: 83%, in all.  Boy, was I relieved when I was done, let me tell you.

So I raised my hand, and was ushered out to the waiting area again by the test proctor, where I received the printout of my final results. I gathered my things from the locker, and with the printout in hand, went downstairs, left the testing center, and crossed over to the other side of the road, where our instructor Mike and some of my other classmates were waiting.

In the end, all four of us who had the eight-o’clock schedule passed,which was probably a big off our instructor’s shoulders.  With the results in hand, the lot of us started walking in the direction of RCBC, where those about to take the next scheduled exams were waiting at the Starbucks branch on the second floor. We escorted them to the entrance of the other testing center (Pearsons, by Buendia), then it was back to RCBC Starbucks to settle and wait.  We stayed like that for maybe an hour and a half.

The third batch had all arrived by then, at which we all went out again to Pearsons. We met the second batch, there by the entrance, but this time around the results weren’t as sunny: two passes, two fails. After wishing the last batch good luck, it was back to RCBC Starbucks again for the wait.  

This time around, we didn’t have to meet up with the last batch; they came to Starbucks, but the news wasn’t rosy at all.  Of the four who took the exam this time, only one passed, while the other three failed.  Ouch.

Despite this, Mike held up his promise to treat us, regardless of the results. Not all of us took him up with his offer though, but seven of us still went with him back to Glorietta, where we all had a big feast at Bacolod’s Chicken Inasal (at the second floor of Glorietta). After that, we all parted ways, though I had to give Mike by password so he could fix my HR submission (I had mistakenly set yesterday as “Official Business”, when it should have been for today).

When I got home, I was so full, that I had to eventually had to beg off the dinner that my aunt and her husband (who had just come from Davao) were supposed to treat us to. In the end, only my father (and Ate Grace next door, now seven months pregnant) joined them in the evening (and he later arrived with a whole lot of Shakeys take-out).

Well, that was quite an exciting day.  From this Monday onward, it’s product training, so I won’t be seeing most of the people from the class anymore… Not until we all bump into each other on the work floor, but that’s still at least two or three months away. 

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