It's always such a thing, arriving in a new country. The impressions come thick and fast and we wonder more than ever.
We are inclined to pigeonhole everything somehow. "Look, the roadside stalls are like in Sri Lanka!", "The traffic is fast but quite relaxed, like in Laos" or "The people are so friendly, smiling at us and waving, like in Turkey".
I don't know why we do that. Maybe we then feel something like security, ah, we know, so that's sure to come good.
So we drive through Tunis - right across the city of millions and are surprised sometimes more, later less and less, that suddenly pedestrians cross the street without looking ("Hello, guardian angel!"), that the indicators of Tunisian cars don't seem to work or their purpose hasn't got around and that people park and spontaneously stop, mainly directly in the roundabout. Even buses - once in the roundabout - simply stop, the doors open and first of all passengers are let in and out.
I briefly consider whether I would rather have British left-hand traffic again instead of Tunisian city traffic. But I discard the wish, because you have to be careful what you wish for.
Our sat nav is not very helpful, we couldn't buy any maps for Tunisia. But maps.me (a kind of google-maps) guides us from perfect motorways to our favourite side roads. The radio sounds Arabic, we have not yet discovered a station with music.
After a good hour of city traffic, we reach the outskirts. It gets emptier and quieter. And we notice in retrospect that we are always let in. At first we think it's the foreigners' bonus. Until we realise that we belong to the large to very large group of people here and therefore - size matters? - we are always given some kind of right of way.
Sinkholes, as we Swiss call manhole covers, live up to their name here. We suspect that the word sinkhole was invented here: you can sink into it. Holes up to knee-deep in the middle of the road. But also here: the traffic is flowing, but very quiet, swerving to the other side of the road is obligatory due to the road surface (or road-not-surface).
We are already very happy on day 2 to have chosen a Additional air suspension Our Felix rattles much less, the furniture lacks creakiness and we can have a good time.
When passing through a town, maps.me leads us directly through the Friday market. For the time being, we can't go any further here. So, like everyone else, we follow the one-way street in the opposite direction, there are two lanes here that are actually fully parked by the traders. Nevertheless, there is a lot of traffic in both directions.
We, once again much too tall, slowly push on, stop, are smiled at and at some point addressed in German "Welcome, I'm from Heidelberg. I live here again now. Today is Friday, we have a market! Take your time, it can take a while here now!" We laugh, emphasise that we have all the time in the world and let a few kamikaze scooter riders pass, until it's time for us to move on again a few metres.
At the end of our trip to England, we felt a little reluctant to travel, but here it suddenly flares up. Our eyes, our ears, our hearts are open and we soak up everything.
Merci for "travelling with us
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