Pam asked Alexander McCall Smith:

What kind of car is Mma Ramotswe's little white van? An American "van" is enclosed, but you describe it as holding only one passenger with others in the back in the open. This suggests a pick-up truck, yet Rra Matekoni has a truck which isn't called a van. That little white van is a character on its own. Please help me picture it!

Alexander McCall Smith It's a pick-up truck. I call it a van because it is difficult to find an easily understandable international word. In Botswana they call them bakkies, but nobody knows that word in Europe or North America. The Australians call them utes. I decided that van would have to do. AMcS

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