Spring Break at the DMV

by Dalton Day

For Mathias

Author’s Notes

The transitions between each scene can be as smooth or as opposite-of-smooth as possible. Lighting can be used to indicate the end / beginning of a scene, or the actors can just start the next scene without any break at all. 

“//” denotes a line that is interrupted by the one following it.

Italicized text is not verbalized.


A1, A2, A3: Three friends who are about to go on Spring Break. Though they are college-aged, they should be played by actors in their late 20s. They are going to be friends forever. This isn’t a nostalgic play, though. Because nostalgia is poisonous and honestly?? It’s like, an inch (at most) from being pure, unfiltered sadness. Nobody needs that. With that being said, I miss you, terribly.

DMV EMPLOYEE: They are just doing their job.

DOG: What dog?!

SOMEONE ELSE: You don’t know them. I wouldn’t worry about it. 

SCENE 1 (Or, Prologue)

A dog’s bark is heard.


A1, A2, & A3 walk onstage, wearing typical beach clothes. A spotlight follows them. They get used to this, but they don’t notice it. They resist it. Perhaps they try to go in separate directions, outside of the diameter of the spotlight. If this happens, three smaller spotlights should appear, one on each of them. But, eventually, they should reconvene at the end of this, in one spotlight, center-stage.


A1:     I can’t believe we have to come here.

A2:     Come where?

A3:     There’s nothing I can’t believe.

Someone should laugh who isn’t A1, A2, or A3. The play stops here unless someone laughs, ok?


DMV EMPLOYEE appears onstage. 

A1:     Well we’re here now, so let’s make the best of it.

A2:     Whatever you say, boss.

A3:     Boss?


A1, A2, & A3 approach DMV EMPLOYEE. They wait to be greeted, but they aren’t.

A1:     Good morning.

A2:     Good afternoon.

A3:     [with fondness] I hope we stay friends forever.


No lights. A smooth jazz track plays. It should be waiting room music. As the song continues, though, a little more…umph…is added to the mix. Then the sound of someone coming into the sound booth & saying Woah woah woah, that’s not right. Here, play this. Nothing plays.



Take a number.

The number 24 is projected on a screen.

A1:     24 it is!

A2:     That’s not that long of a wait.

A3:     This conversation is horrible.


A1, A2, & A3 are sitting on the floor downstage. DMV EMPLOYEE is still there. DMV EMPLOYEE can be walking around the stage, miming typical office tasks, or they can eat their lunch, or they can pull out a trumpet & play a sorrowful tune. Yeah, that one, eventually. 

A1:     I was reading the other day about memory. 

How memories aren’t stored in a system in the brain, 

that memories ARE the system in the brain.

A2:     Oh, so it’s like, not a window in a room, 

but like, the room itself?

A3:     I’m going to remember this moment, 

right here, 

for as long as I can.

Lights fade as trumpet song comes to an end.


A1, A2, & A3 are in a different room. There is a window, suspended in air. 

A1:     We should go to the beach for spring break.

A2:     Hell yeah! Sand, sun, &…& uh….

A3:     Salt!

All cheer.


A dog’s bark is heard, again. 


Back at the DMV. The number 25 is projected on the wall. 

A1:     Wait a minute. Weren’t we 24? They never called it!

A2:     Oh man, we’re never gonna get out of here.

A3:     I think, when I look back at my life, 

I’m going to be happy. 


Smiling. I hope. 

SOMEONE ELSE walks onstage, & approaches DMV EMPLOYEE.


Number 25! I’m number 25 right here!

DMV EMPLOYEE:     Well, hello again! It’s a pleasure to see your face! Let’s get you what you need so you can be on your way! I hope the wait wasn’t too bad.


Wait? What wait?

Both laugh, & exit.


A3’s voice is heard but not seen.

A3:     Isn’t it weird? The way people enter your life? 


Like, you meet people, 

& then, next thing you know, 

you’ve known them for a year or two & it’s just…

impossible to track how they got here. 

How close you are to them. 

How you’ve shared such a small amount of your life with them,

& yet it’s…I dunno.

Don’t laugh! 

It’s weird! 

& like, how there’s no way you’re going to go back to a life without them. 

You just…

You can’t even picture it.

Try it.

Try to picture it. 


Only A2 & A3 are onstage. A couple beats before the dialogue starts.

A2:     Laughing. Oh my god! 

A3:     Laughing. I can’t believe you just said that!


Is that—is that a dog?! There’s a dog walking around the audience. What kind is it? Oh it doesn’t matter, it’s a dog! The dog is probably gonna walk around & sniff a little bit. Probably no accidents. Maybe the dog will go on stage. If that happens, follow it with a spotlight. If it lies down, keep the spotlight on it, but maybe dim it? This will be the remaining length of the play. What a great ending! But probably the dog will wander off-stage, & then the next scene can start. Dang! What a great dog!


A2:     Yeah, we’ve been here AT LEAST that long, if not longer.

A3:     If not longer.


A2:     Why don’t you go up there & see where we are in line.

A3:     Couldn’t hurt.

A2 & A3 turn towards DMV employee, but neither get up. A beat.

DMV EMPLOYEE:     You should be next. 


A2 & A3 turn back to where they were. A beat.

A2:     What did they say?

A3:     Where are we?


A2:     (thinking) Hmm…lie down on the beach 

& just listen to the waves crash. 

I could do that for hours.

A3:     You could do THAT for hours?


A2:     Y’all hungry? 

A3:     (clearly to audience) Y’all hungry? 

A beat.

Me neither.


A2 alone on stage. They are walking around, clearly bored. Eventually they go to the edge of the stage, dangling their legs off the side.

A2:     I remember very well the first time I saw the ocean.

I was scared.

I couldn’t swim well.

& there I was, face to face with so much…muchness.

Whoever I was with told me not to be afraid.

But I was.

But it was beautiful.

& I knew that I would remember everything about that moment until (trails off)

However old I was.

However many people were there.

How long it would take me to finally work up the courage to walk towards—

A beat

To walk towards—

A beat


A beat, A2 looks clearly stumped, before smiling.

A2:     It was beautiful. 


The number 24 is projected on the wall for a moment, before malfunctioning. A technical error should show on the screen. Someone (not Someone else) walks onstage. They look up at the screen, reading the error, & then hit the wall (if they can’t hit the wall for some reason, a clap will do). The error screen disappears, & is replaced with a looped video of the sky. A few clouds, a bird or two. Nothing except sky should be seen in the video. Whoever walked onstage, exits.


Sky still projected. A1, A2, & A3 walk onstage. They spread out, A1 stage left, A2 upstage center, & A3 stage right. 

A1:     Ok, so remember. Each person says one word at a time, making a story. & there’s no going back, no redos, & you only have three seconds to come up with your word. Ready?

A2:     Yep.

A3:     Alright.

A beat.

A1:     There-

A2:     Once-

A3:     Was-

A1:     A-

A2:     Day-

A3:     That-

A1:     Seemed-

A2:     To-

A3:     Last-

A1 pauses. 

A2:     1-

A3:     2-


Has anybody seen that dog?


A2:     Yeah, me too. I’m sick of waiting around. It’s not worth it.

A3:     We should be next.


A3’s voice is heard. 

A3:     There’s got to be a simpler way to do this.

Like, an extra hand.

Every time you have to say goodbye,

like, a real goodbye,

like, you are leaving my life,

you grow an extra hand.

Simple, right?

A beat.

Though, I guess—

A beat.

Sometimes you’d just grow a hand out of nowhere,

& that’s how you’d find out you’ve said goodbye.

That’d suck. 

Especially if it was the first time.

A beat.

& I guess eventually, you’d have more hands

than people to say goodbye to. 

A beat.

How many hands does someone need?

To say goodbye?

This many?

A beat.

I’m waving.

A beat.

Can you see me?

A beat.

I’m standing right here.


A beat.

Either a knocking sound or a clapping sound should happen, whichever one was used to fix the error screen earlier.


A3 & DMV EMPLOYEE onstage.

A3:     Oh, come on. It hasn’t been that bad. 


A3:     & hey, at least none of us had to be here alone. 


A1 walks onstage. They do so hesitantly, looking around a lot, as if to make sure they are alone. When they reach center stage, their face dramatically goes from cautious to thoughtful. They sigh.

A1:     Know who I miss?


DMV EMPLOYEE alone onstage. They pull out their trumpet again & start to play. No sound is coming out though. They examine the instrument, & try again. Nothing. They are visibly straining to make sound come out of the instrument. They finally stop trying before looking past the audience, using their hand to see in the darkness. They gesture toward their trumpet, shaking it & shrugging their shoulders. A voice says from the sound booth: “Yeah, we’re working on it. Sorry about that.” DMV EMPLOYEE nods, puts their trumpet away.

DMV EMPLOYEE:     I don’t mind waiting.


A1, A2, A3 on stage with DMV EMPLOYEE:     A1:     I think I’m going to head out. 

A2:     Yeah, me too—//

A3:     //–Wait. 


A1, A2, A3 onstage with DMV EMPLOYEE. A1 & A2 don’t move or interact. DMV EMPLOYEE moves as they please.

A3:     I need a second.

I need to remember as much as I can.

A beat.

This is like those horses. 

Looks to DMV EMPLOYEE for recognition, gets none.

Those horses. From World War II.  


In World War II, a bunch of horses ran into a lake because they were scared & then–.

A beat.


The lake froze solid.

With the horses inside.

A beat.

I mean. 

It’s probably just a legend.

A beat.


This is like that.

(looks to DMV EMPLOYEE) Don’t you think?

DMV EMPLOYEE:     I think—

The projection quickly goes through a series of numbers. Is “24” in there? I think I saw it. Is this over? I don’t want it to be. It can’t be. Not yet. Not yet. It lands on the loop on the sky.

It’s time for my break.


A3 sits perfectly still while a lot of people walk through the DMV. DMV EMPLOYEE is on their break, so will not be in this scene. This should appear fast, the people not spending much time onstage, a few seconds at most. Feel free to just use audio of a lot of steps & human voices, if a lot of people cannot be found.


A3 sits onstage. DMV EMPLOYEE Returns.

A3:     Ok.

I’m with y’all. 

Let’s get out of here.

A3 starts to get up. 


Who is your best friend? Have they always been your best friend? How many best friends have there been before them? Who do you miss? Can you tell them? Will you? 


I miss you.


A1, A2, A3 enter the DMV. DMV EMPLOYEE greets them.

A1:     Hello!

A2:     Hi!

A3:     Hey!

DMV EMPLOYEE:     My thoughts exactly! Right this way!

They all exit.


A1, A2, A3 enter the DMV. DMV EMPLOYEE greets them.

A1:     Hello!

A2:     Hi!

A3:     Hey!

DMV EMPLOYEE:     My thoughts exactly! Right this way!

They all exit.


A1, A2, A3 enter the DMV. DMV EMPLOYEE greets them.

A1:     Hello!

A2:     Hi!

A3:     Hey!

DMV EMPLOYEE:     My thoughts exactly! Right this way!

They all exit.


A3 enters the DMV. DMV EMPLOYEE isn’t there.

A3:     Do you mind if we sit here for a little while?

A beat.



The video of the loop of the sky plays. This time, though, there is sound. Seagulls, & the sound of ocean waves. Other sounds typical of a day at the beach. This continues through the end of the play.


Video continues. Lights up. End of play. 

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