My friends and I found a great scootering deal online and although all three of us grew up in San Francisco, we decided to play “tourist” for the day. Scoot was currently having a summer promotion ($10 for 3 rides) and since neither my friends nor I have ever ridden in a scooter, we thought it would be a fun thing to try.
We signed up for a quick introductory lesson on Sunday. Never having ridden a Vespa or a motorcycle, I was definitely a little wobbly in the beginning and even at the end, I wasn’t quite sure I had gotten the hang of it yet. There were a couple signs that told me I should probably not invest in a scooter anytime soon: given that they were electric scooters, it was hard to tell when they were on or off; there was no speedometer so I had no idea how fast I was going; I kept forgetting to turn off my turn signals (I’m sure cars behind me loved that); and most importantly, I kept forgetting where my throttle was and it would take me a second to remind myself where my brakes were. By the end, I had determined that I was much too clumsy for this.
We rode in formation like the Harley Davidsons that roared beside us–and with our matching red rides, we quickly dubbed ourselves “San Francisco’s first electric scooter gang”.
We rode through Fisherman’s Wharf, down to the Embarcadero and the Ferry Building, then looped around to Crissy Fields and the foot of Golden Gate Bridge before swinging by the Palace of Fine Arts. Although I have been to these places numerous times, it was exciting to see it on the back of a scooter, zipping through the streets of downtown San Francisco. The wind blew through our hair and stung our eyes as we rode along, but there was no window or metal frame between us and the City: it felt more real, we could see things in a different light, notice things that would have otherwise been missed if we were simply in a car. It was thrilling and scary at the same time.
When we reached an empty local street by Crissy Fields, we raced down the gently curving road and pushed our scooters to the limit (which was probably no more than 20 miles per hour).
If given the chance, I would probably do it again, I’d just have to make sure I have bandaids at the ready. Next time though, I’d like to ride along the beach and take in the ocean air.