Today, I drove in town for the first time on a weekday. Driving in Mthatha is unexplainable. You really have to experience it to know what I mean. It wouldn’t be a normal day if at least one stoplight (they’re called Robots here) were not out. Cross walks are optional and people generally don’t take the option. Pot holes are everywhere. There are the “Transkei Big Five” wandering about and sometimes in the road – that’s cows, horses, goats, sheep, and dogs. As well, what could be considered “reckless driving” in the States is generally the norm here. People here say that if you can drive in Mthatha, you can drive anywhere, but I think that if I drove in Oklahoma the way I do here, I would be pulled over on suspicion of DUI. It’s kind of like playing Frogger, but in real life. Some days, it can be made into a game like “Dodge the Potholes” or “How Many People are in the Taxi that Just Cut Me Off,” and sometimes, it is just nerve-wracking. Especially for someone just learning how to drive stick on the left side of the road! I think I’m starting to get the hang of it though and the women that I drive to and from Itipini everyday are really nice about it. I stalled out at a four-way stop today and they just said, “It’s okay, Karen. Just take it slow. You got it.” I’ve found that having driving music is also a must. Something to keep you groovin, moving along, and calm is key to not losing your mind.
|Yup... I drive a truck these days.|