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I'm Moving my Car To Africa By International Auto Shipping Company

May 30, 2008
My car was delivered in style, driven by a guy whose cologne has left its permanent musky scent on my seat thankfully not an unpleasant aroma. The final words to me from the rep at the international auto shipping office rang in my head.

You're moving where?

Whenever I have this conversation with family or friends, I develop headaches. What's so strange? It's a land of incredibly ancient and wonderful things. The struggles to survive and the extremes to which one strives to do so, these things appeal to me.

In relocating to such a completely foreign country, by myself, I had to take every precaution that I would be safe, informed, and could adjust as quickly as possible, allowing myself time to consider what I would do once I got there. Write? Work in an office? Drive a cab in a city? Sell goats in a village? The possibilities were endless, as were the pitfalls.

Since my friend in Gambia had offered to rent me a room, housing was taken care of. The problem of transportation was a different matter. Take my minivan to Gambia? I decided to let my fingers do the walking and I found an international auto shipping company that was up to that particular task.

Information was vague, prices were high, and it was possible that a few palms were going to have to be greased. I just kept thinking about exotic wildlife and spicy new seasonings in people and food; that got me through.

These international auto shippers were exactly what I needed in such a situation. They knew, to the penny, how much things were probably going to cost. They could tell me what to do to my vehicle to get it ready for moving (thank heavens my steering column is on the left). And they promised that, since I had a permanent residential address in Gambia and could pay the fees and taxes, they could get hold of the necessary Letter of Authority and Permit for Import that I would need sometimes no small feat, from what I gathered.

These guys certainly had their work cut out for them. All I had to do was to wait for my flight to leave, and spiff my car up to meet customs standards. I had to study for a driving exam, to make sure that I could pass a test there. The international auto shipping company, on the other hand, was up to their ears in bureaucracies and bullies. They were used to this, my rep said, and simply knew how to say "Please" in every known language.

So, on my departure from the international auto shipping company's dock I saw my car, aimed at Africa, and I sent a silent Godspeed toward it and wished it a safe journey, wondering what I would find on the other side, in a few weeks.

My car was delivered in style, driven by a guy whose cologne has left its permanent musky scent on my seat thankfully not an unpleasant aroma. The final words to me from the rep at the international auto shipping office rang in my head.

Have a safe journey home.
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