After just over 8 months of walking around the city, we are happy to announce we finally have a car! It is a light blue Hyundai Accent, 2008. It's a new car, which is great because it means we have warranty that goes with it, if anything should go wrong. Our friend, Vetali, is a mechanic and helped us find it. Cars are pretty expensive around here, even for used cars. But we were able to find a deal at the Hyundai dealership that we couldn't pass up. After finding the car, he and his wife Galina worked hard to help us get all the paperwork sorted. We are so blessed to have friends like them here!!!
Needless to say, we are now spoiled and are LOVING the convenience. The first night we had our car, we drove to the grocery store. It was so different I felt like I no longer lived in Kharkov. It was just so easy and fast! Imagine this: driving to the grocery store, getting your groceries, packing them in your trunk (or boot), and then driving them home. I'm smiling as I write this because it's so wonderful! No more blisters or sore arms... and energy to spare!
Of course, we won't be driving everywhere like we did in the states. Our teammates apartments are still close enough to walk to and sometimes traffic is bad enough, it's just easier to walk or take the metro instead. The main blessing of having the car will be for when we will have to carry a lot home. It will also be nice in the winter to not have to fight the cold as much.
Several of you have asked about the driving here. It is pretty crazy, yes. For the most part, if it looks like they can get away with it, they'll do it (i.e. driving on the wrong side of the road, running lights, etc.). So, we're learning the rules and then learning how to drive with other cars who don't abide by those rules. Now is the best time of year for us to be learning as the roads are all in pretty good condition. In the winter everything is icy, then when spring comes there are pot holes everywhere. The pot holes are dangerous by themselves, but then there are the cars swerving to avoid the pot holes. Hopefully, come winter, we'll be a little more prepared to deal with "the worst."
I've also posted some pictures of our car. As you can see, we've already had it loaded to the max with our teammates. Even though it's small, Denyce, Malachi, and Silas all fit in the back seat pretty well!
So, for us, life just got a little bit easier and we are very happy about that!