Oh Subaru, how I’ve missed you! James is bringing the car home from the Embassy tonight…almost as exciting as bringing the baby home from the hospital! Well, maybe not, but still…we’re very excited.
And the timing couldn’t have been more perfect. This was also the last day we had the rental car. I’ve had a week of practice driving, and I’m slowly getting the hang of negotiating this insane traffic. Some things I’ve learned this week:
- One way streets…just a suggestion. But enter at your own peril. You may have a lot of backwards driving to do.
- Speaking of backwards driving, I successfully pulled the rental car into the driveway backwards without hitting anything or taking off any mirrors! Yay! I hadn’t actually planned to try it out, but I was having a hell of a time parallel parking in front of our house, so I figured if I was going to struggle, why not struggle down a steep ass hill? Backwards. The struggle continued as I made it back up the hill this morning. I think the trick is to just gun it and pray that anyone passing on the sidewalk will hear my tires spinning and LOOK OUT.
- When parking the car, one does not ask, “Is this a legal parking space?” but rather, “Can my car fit in here without technically blocking traffic and leave me enough room to open the doors?” Let’s just say people get creative here. They pull up onto curbs with their rear ends hanging out in traffic. They park right up to the very edge of the corner, leaving barely enough room for cars to turn. In the grass, on the median, in the middle of a large parking lot. You name it, I’ve seen it. Give me a few more weeks and I’ll probably have done it, too.
- And if all else fails, just throw on your flashers and double park. It’s what we do here! Take your time, chat up the cashier, it’s all good!
- If you’re the first car stopped at a stoplight, good luck locating the traffic signal. It’s likely five feet behind you. You’ll know when it’s your turn to go when 15 motorbikes peel out on either side of you.
- I’ve been to the IKEA four times now, and the entrance ramp to the highway still eludes me. I made the same wrong turn I did last time, and I had to pull over and consult the GPS to get my bearings. It took me on this convoluted route I would NEVER have figured out on my own. GPS, you are my hero!
- Sometimes the road has two lanes, and sometimes it has three. It will change multiple times without warning, and with such faded paint that you won’t notice it until somebody honks at you. But it’s ok. Most everyone is driving in imaginary lanes anyway.