“What is that?” Gomel residents are wondering as they spot an egg like car on the streets of the city. Turns out the owners of the unusual vehicle is a couple who came to Belarus from the Austrian city Dornbirn on the 1955 BMW Isetta.
Is it a baby toy?
Smiling Roland and Vlada Dimai get out of their 63-year-old BMW to talk to the journalists about their toy car and share emotions about Belarus.
Before their stop in Gomel, the couple racked up 5,000 kilometers around Europe this summer.
Bringing smiles on people’s faces
Actually, they didn’t cover the whole route by a 350kg baby, at autobahns and highways it was tranported in a special trailer.
And only in big cities, the vintage treasure saw the light of the day.
“We really like taking the car with us, because people always smile when seeing it. Nobody envies us, it arises only positive emotions,” says Roland.
The man purchased the retor car 35 years ago. He honestly states even then it was old-timey and didn’t work as it should.
Ronald put a lot of time, efforts and money to bring the legendary car back to life. Even now it costs him a fortune to keep it afloat.
Nonetheless, the guys forgive all the car’s whims, expensive repairs and spontaneous breakdowns. This is exactly what they experienced once again in Brest.
The car suddenly refused to start in the city centre. Fortunately, members of the local vintage cars club came to help.
“We contacted them and they immediately showed up. The starter relay turned out to break.
Surely, there was no place where we could get the original car spare part.
But the guys came up with a temporary and very good ideas,” says Vlada.
Vlada’s relatives live here – her uncle is in Gomel and grandmother in the village near Dobrush. The Austrian family came to stay with them for a while.
Belarus is heaven for tourist but for…
“Chernobyl, radiation and dictatorship,” Roland pronounces in Russian the words he associated with Belarus before the trip.
But many things changed in a few days. “I’m surprised, and I like it here. I saw very beautiful wide streets, everything is neat and safe.
People are friendly, always ready to help, they also seem to be well educated,” the European guest admits.
According to the Austrians, Belarus is an ideal country for tourism. But there is one thing that spoiled their impressions.
“This is the bureaucracy! We spent an hour to apply for BelToll. And we have never filled in so many papers before.
The whole world switched to the electronic system, why not Belarus?”
The tourist admites that he hates paperwork, and next time they’d probably prefer to go to Russia, Lithuania or Poland.
The next stop of Vlada and Roland’s journey is in Minsk. After that they’ll go back to Austria.