Well after five years of living in China I'm considering something I've never considered before. Getting my Chinese Drivers license...
In Xian our family was smaller (and made taking taxis easier) and traffic much, much worse. So I never really considered it. Also, on a side note, I value my sanity and driving in China, in my opinion, would seriously jeopardize that. But... Now we have 5 kids and if we want to go anywhere we need to get two taxis, which costs more and is not incredibly easy. And the winter is coming which makes getting out of the house even more difficult. It also helps that the city we're in now, Xining, doesn't have as bad of traffic. (Also, I don't value my sanity like I did in the past)
Sooooo..... I'm taking steps towards getting my license! The test, as I'm told, is 100 random questions drawn out of a pool of 900-1500 (depending on who you talk to and what you read online). And you need to score a 90 or better to pass. The issue is that the questions are poorly translated making them difficult to understand and answer.
After I get my license (assuming I do) we will then save up some money to buy a minivan.
We're nearly done with getting all of our paperwork together for our dossier and to finish our home study. It seems like every document and step uncovers something else we need to prepare. However, I'm hopeful that we will be done with this phase in the near future. So many people have helped in so many ways to get us to this point. We're incredibly grateful to all of you. I will keep you posted as more transpires.