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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

My First Combie Ride

Hello from Port Elizabeth,
Thanks to you all who leave comments, it really encourages me. Life has been busy as usual, but that is a good thing! I have now checked off one of the "to do" items for my time here in South Africa. I have taken a ride in a taxi. Now this may not seem like a big deal to you, but for me it is something that I have really wanted to do. Combies or taxis are the main source of public transportation in South Africa. They are typically large van type vehicles that rule the streets. They drive around cram packed full of people looking for more to pick up. On man hangs out the window looking for passengers who are waiting to be picked up as well as yelling our the destinations of the particular taxi. Looks like fun to me! I have made it known to several people that I wanted to have this experience but both our coordinators and the locals made me promise that I wouldn't take on this venture alone. They were quite serious as they said this and wanted me to understand that being foreign as well as white this might not be the safest form of transportation for me which is why we bought cars when we moved here. I have respected their wisdom but finally got an opportunity when I offered to help Charmaine Domingo a local member at Gelvan Park C of C who works at a Kresh or Pre-School. I met her at her home early Friday morning about 7 and from there we took two taxis to school. It was great! I loved travelling that way as I was able to see how the majority of the people we know travel daily. Charmaine was quite selective about the combie we took as they are often packed full and play extremely loud music. She said that we are paying our fair and we deserve a seat to ourselves and to not have our ears damaged by the booming music! I have to admit, I was a little disappointed, but none the less enjoyed my trip to school that morning. If you are ever in another country or even culture within the nation you live I encourage you to experience the local events. It will help you to better understand them and appreciate more things about their lives. I pray that you will be blessed this week and know how much I appreciate your being apart of my life!
In Him,


Guy & Nan said...

FUN TIMES - I'm glad you got to ride a combie! That sounds fun. It is weird..when you ride taxis in other countries they drive totally reckless but somehow it feels safe. If people drove that way here we would be terrified. Anyway -cool experience. I enjoyed reading your blog..and no it was not a sympathy comment. I really care. :-) - nan

Lucy McDougle said...

I am sorry you had to wait so long to have such a wonderful, local experience. When you come to Russia, we will take you on lots of local rides, since it is much safer!
We love you so much.

Lucy McDougle said...

PS- They are called Combis in Mexico too! How fun!