Farewell to the Fantastic Fiat!

Everyone who has worked with or volunteered with Firm Foundations Romania knows how much vice president Steffi Vogel loves babies, people, and animals. One other thing that Steffi loves, and everyone knows about, is her Fantastic Fiat Doblo. This much beloved car became like family and Steffi often refers to it as her baby, talking to the car, not letting people make fun of the car, and reminding everyone just how fantastic it is!

And it really is a fantastic car: fitting up to 20 banana boxes of donations to be given to the hospital or various centers, fitting over 100 shoe boxes each Christmas for the children in the After School Program, being used as an “ambulance” to drive healthy babies back to their parents in Budila, driving teenagers into town for a fun day in the city, and being able to fit three mattresses to transport to the volunteer apartment. The car has been greatly appreciated and very well used.

The Fantastic Fiat also comes with its share of memories, like the time the sliding doors wouldn’t open in the freezing cold so the FFR Board of Directors had to all pile in through the front passenger door and climb to the back. Or trips up to Pestera, a nearby village with beautiful scenery, that one time ended in the car not starting and another time ended with the keys being lost (and miraculously found by a stranger and left at a hotel). Or Steffi driving six hours in a snowstorm to pick up shoeboxes and by the end of the trip, she thought the windshield wipers were worshipping angels.

Since 2006, the Doblo has been serving the Romanian people and will continue to do so, but not with FFR. The many trips of moving donations and volunteers has taken its toll on the car, and we have made the decision to part ways. It is with sadness that we say farewell to the Fantastic Fiat but with pleasure, the car is being passed along to very close friends so it’s staying in “the family”… and keeping its FFR license plate.

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