The other day we were moving towns and as we were driving I noticed that we started going really, really slowly. Like crazy slow. Which is much slower than the normal semi snail pace that we are accustomed to and after craning my neck to see around Optimus, I realised it was because we got stuck behind another mobile home. Now it’s quite a feat for Optimus to get stuck behind anything at all, given that his max speed is 80kmph. But stuck we were.
This mobile home was a monster. In fact I’m pretty sure it was in a site near us in Addo. I’d walked past it on my way to the ablutions and marvelled at how big it was – how you’d be able to fit so much more in there without even giving it a second thought. But I knew this thing was a real machine so it didn’t explain why it was going so slowly. Till I looked closer and realised that it was towing a little 4×4.
I actually laughed out loud as I drove along in my little Figo.
You see, we’ve been travelling in two cars since we left Cape Town, 31 days ago. And it’s one of the things that catches most people off guard. We rock up in two cars and they can’t believe we’ve been driving separately. What about the roadtrip memories that we are missing out on?
I hear you. At first I mourned the fact that Seth and I weren’t able to chat and shout at the kids together. Or get irritated with each other for getting lost. Or easily make the call to stop for lunch because we’d be sitting right next to each other in the van. I was sad that we wouldn’t associate the same songs or smells to the same parts of the adventure.
But then I saw the bigger picture and now I am so glad that we brought my car with.
BUT WHY? Why did we bring my car?
Well, up until about 2 weeks before we left we were dead set on selling it. My aim was to then buy myself a little Mini Cooper (my dream car) when I got back. That doesn’t seem likely now because we had to make another plan. I’m not sure if you’ve been following along on our Instagram stories (me here, or Seth here).
Anyway, Seth mentioned in his stories the real reason that we’re going separately. He installed the back seats of the van himself but it’s all connected with wood. Which means that in a car accident the kids wouldn’t stand a chance. And considering the fact that we would be doing a heck of a lot of driving, we didn’t want to take that chance.
However, it’s not all that bad. Here are some reasons why having the extra car is the best decision we could have made:
- OPTIMUS IS A MASSIVE OLD FART – I love our old boy but man, he’s not exactly a dream to drive. Manoeuvring him around towns, small parking spots and shopping trips was going to be a nightmare.
- SAFETY FIRST – Aside from the fact that the kids are safer, having the extra car also allows options if Optimus had to breakdown. We wouldn’t be stuck on the side of the road, vulnerable to who even knows what. We can go for help. And vice versa if my Figs gives up for some or other reason.
- LASS FACTOR – The fact that we would have to completely pack up every single time we wanted to get some bread and milk freaked me out a bit. The set out and pack up is quite a mission and doing that every day would do my head in.
- SPACE ISN’T A BAD THING – Yes I mourn that we aren’t together, but consider the fact that we are always together. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All five of us are all up in each other’s faces. We love it, but a small break isn’t a bad thing either.
- SPEAKING OF SPACE – The car provides a safe haven for the things that we need but don’t use very often. Optimus would be impossibly full were it not for my car.
So all in all the extra petrol bill is worth it in the long run for our sanity and safety. One day when we’re big, we’ll have one of those monsters that can tow a 4×4 behind them, but for now we’re quite happy to keep on going as is.