A week ago today, after 7 months of living here and 9 months after we sold our last vehicle in the States ... we finally got our Tanzanian car!
It has been a long, frustrating and sometimes almost painful journey ... but we got there and ironically only a couple of hours after it arrived we were already changing our first flat tyre!
For the first month that we were here and the last week before the car arrived, we had no transport. As a family of 4 it has been quite restrictive. Having said that we have been overwhelmed by the generosity of three families in particular, who have lent us their cars.
Until 'our car' (still exciting to be able to say that!) arrived, I didn't realise just how much we felt held back without wheels of our own. Not knowing how long we would have to wait to get a car or whether we would have an alternative option when the owners of the borrowed ones needed their vehicle's returned. Not being able to plan ahead for trips. Not being able to leave stuff in the car. All small little stressors individually but amounting to a lot more that I had anticipated.
Now, a week on, it still feels like a novelty, to be able to go anywhere, at anytime, dump stuff in it and carry things around in the car that we always need (wipes/tissues etc) without feeling like we can't leave them in there. It feels SO good! It feels like a weight has been taken off my shoulders, one I never even realised was there!
It may seem like something small and insignificant to you reading this, after all many people we know survive without a car. But during the settling in period especially, when there isn't great public transport here and we live on the other side of town to the shops, school, church and a lot of our friends, a car is a necessity, especially with 2 little ones.
Already in this last week since it arrived, we have booked a holiday, I've visited a local friend and ... I've just felt a freedom I didn't even realise I was missing!! So so so wonderful!