Goodbye, Minivan!

Today, the family who agreed to buy our Toyota Sienna minivan (friends and personal supporters, actually), took possession of the vehicle and drove it to their home in Pennsylvania. This pretty much ties up the final loose end of our life in the U.S. — after we cancel our Geico insurance policy, that is!

I’m really relieved to have finally sold the van. It’s been hanging over our heads for several months now, and causing a drain on our monthly budget. I didn’t expect it would take us this long to find a buyer, and I haven’t been interested in considering the purchase of a second car here in Ecuador until we got rid of it, which means we’ve been a one-car family since arriving here almost nine months ago. Normally, that’s not an issue, but since Rusty travels out to the jungle so frequently, it would be nice to have my own mode of transportation when he’s not around.

So, yes, I’m relieved. Relieved to have finally sold the van and relieved to be able to actually seriously consider purchasing a second, smaller car. At the same time, I find myself a little sentimental over the van. It really was a great car for our family these past six years. It came into our lives at a time when we needed a vehicle, but couldn’t afford to purchase one, having recently returned to the States from Japan to take care of Rusty’s mom, who was dying of a brain tumor. We drove the car until she died; then we basically inherited it from her.

The car has gone with us across the country on numerous occasions and served us well during all our fundraising and moving around. It has been a faithful companion as we logged many miles on the road. And it accommodated our growing family easily — we went from one child to three during the time we owned it! When we moved to Portugal, we left the car with my parents, and it was so convenient to have our own vehicle to drive when we came back to visit. It does make me a tad anxious that we won’t have it at our disposal when we go back on furloughs now.

I really wish we could have brought the van with us to Ecuador; unfortunately, customs regulations here prohibit the importation of vehicles over 3 years old. I’m thankful it is going to our friends who are devoted Toyota people, and I hope it serves them as well as it has served us these past six years!

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