big big world

Selling a Mercedes in Abkhazia

31 Mar , 2011  


Selling our eggplant-color stallion somewhere near by Georgia.

Part I

After our summer trip to South of Russia/Abkhazia – somehow was born an idea to transport a car to Abkhazia and make another Eastern Europe trip out of it during our winter vacantion. So we bought an old Mercedes E… (Lupatii – it is a name of this kind of car in Eastern Europe because of his convex lights). Make some …renovation? to be sure we can drive this car  for the next 4000 km.

We did some stops on out way – in Vienna, visited Kaleidoskop there, Budapest, Lviv, Kiev, Mykolaiv, spend our New Year Eve in Crimean caves with (Ivan & Marina, they share our ride from Kiev til Crimea), then took a ferry from Kerch  (Ukraine at that time) to Russia, Sochi, where Olympic Games construction was already in the full swing and crossed the border over to Abkhazia.

On the road in Russia and Ukraine we expirienced a lot :

-tolls on the road – can be paid in cash and in euros or dollars – whatever cash you have … and it is cheaper to pay it direktly and without any reciep….

-if you don`t want to pay tolls and are hard enough to “push trough” you don`t even have to pay any tolls – because it is to much work for police to deal with you (if you don`t speack russian)

-driving slow is dangerous – you defenetly don`t want to be overtaken on the curve by a packed truck on two-way-frezzed “highway”

-holes in the “highway”, also big holes are to be expected

-on this roads there is only one rule – survive…

we learned also that Germans are associated abroad with pornoindustry and second world war.

“Hitler kaputt” “Arbeiten, russische schweine” (how you supouse to react if russian Policeman says this to you… )In a friseur salon after finishing exco`s haircut – a hairdresser says to him “das ist Fantastisch!…” (this phrase is famous from the german pornography that “angeblich” was popular during the Perestroika)

Part II

We are in Abkhazia – country that doesn`t exist on the map. How to sell a car? well… you obviously have to go on the car market and sell – that is how this kind of things usually works, isn`t it? We went to the car market.  On the second day there we felt a strange aminosity. All sellers there were people, who were doing this professionally. At the point, when this professionals started to surround our car, we decided it would be a good time to live.  We got lucky to meet Tengiz (also car seller) and his sister (they live in Sukhum) and accepted us in their home, feeding and carring about us like a part of their own family:)

at the end we found a buyer online.

difficulties :

  • for some people was hard to understand, why exco doesn`t speak russian or abkhazian …
  • it was hard to accept woman as translator – talking with female about cars – was too weird
  • if you want to deal with the people, you have to belong to an abkhazian family, otherewise there is no trust/no respect


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