Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dominican-style driving

Here in the D.R., people drive semi-“normal”. They drive on the right side of the road. They stop at stop signs and red lights, when they are there. They even use turn signals- sometimes. The motorcycles, which outnumber the cars at least 5 to 1, usually weave in and out of the cars, pulling in front of them or alongside of them in tight spots.

The thought of actually driving here can be a scary thought. However, on Monday, I did just that.

One of my new roommates was having a small birthday party at our house for a friend of hers. She was running late and there were a few things she needed at the store. She asked me if I would run up to the store and get them. Sure, I wasn’t busy. I could go. She then handed me the keys to her car. I thought I would be walking, but nope, I was going to be driving. Wow. My first time driving in the D.R. and actually my first time driving in Latin America!

I was nervous just pulling out of the tight space in our driveway and out onto the narrow street with motorcycles passing behind the car. Once I got onto the main road, I felt more comfortable. I made it to the store and back with no problems.

When I got back, she told me that if I ever need to borrow her car, I can. It could be fun getting out and driving around- going places too far to walk.

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