Years ago, before I was a mom, my husband bought me a scooter (Honda Passport) for Christmas. The first time he took me out to test ride it, I forgot where the brakes were and crashed into a fence. Luckily neither I nor the bike sustained any damage. Once I’d gotten the hang of it, I rode it to work (about 4 miles away – mostly downhill) and out on the weekends. After a couple of years I just sort of stopped riding it. I loaned it for just over a year to my brother-in-law who was car-less. He used it for errands and such. I don’t know why I ever got it back from him, but I did. The scooter sat un-ridden, gathering cobwebs and dust in my garage. The tires went flat, the oil leaked, it was a sad sight.
Then came the divorce and the need to sell the house. I’d seen a scooter shop on Brand Blvd. – Scooter Mundo – and took down their number. I called them when the whole process started and left a message asking if they could get the scooter back into condition. Weeks went by and I never heard from them. I was busy with the divorce, work, selling the house, looking after my mom etc. – I didn’t get back to them.
The house sold and we had to move everything out. We sold or gave to the new home owners anything they were interested in and gave away much more – by way of Craig’s List. The stuff we couldn’t bear to part with went into his and hers storage units. I was at a loss for what to do with the scooter. Then, on absolutely the last day, I got a call from Scooter Mundo! They offered to come by and pick her up and let me know what the repairs would cost. Two guys showed up with a pick-up truck and drove off with her. Only after the fact did I realize that I had not seen any identification from either of them. Que sera, sera.
Luckily they were legit. They quoted me a fair price for the repairs so I had the scooter overhauled. Then I came to my senses. I hadn’t ridden the scooter in years. Would I really ever want to ride it? Wouldn’t it be better to sell it?
At this same time I was at a party I mentioned to friends that I was having the Passport repaired and would soon be scootering all over town. They said they could see me doing just that and congratulated me on being so fun loving and free. Sure, that’s the image I wanted them to have but already I knew I’d sell that scooter in a heartbeat.
I gave Scooter Mundo almost a year to sell it. They had lots of interest but no buyers. So yesterday, Sunday, I drove to Honda of North Hollywood to buy a helmet, drove my car to my office and left it there, took the bus to Scooter Mundo and retook possession of the scooter. I had no memory at all how to operate it! I got a quick lesson in starting, shifting, braking (very important!) from scooter Dave who had worked on her. Luckily there was not much traffic. I rode up and down the alley behind the shop for a few minutes – keeping her running was a challenge – and then I turned onto San Fernando Rd. and headed to my office and my car. I managed to stall at every red light (sorry all those drivers behind me!). Then, when I was almost to the office, I stalled and couldn’t get her started. I thought I might have run out of gas so I walked her three blocks to the gas station. There was gas in the tank but I topped it off for the hefty sum of $2.94!
Fortunately I was able to start her and I continued on my way – due to construction in the area there were lots of road closures. I was determined not to make a left turn, certain that I would stall in the middle of the intersection, so I made a series of right turns and finally was off the main road. I spent another fifteen minutes riding up and down the empty streets around my office – mostly practicing stopping without stalling and getting into first gear without stalling. I discovered that I could manage to do most everything without shifting lower than 2nd – which helped.
Now I need to register her – her last sticker was dated 1991! – and take a driving course at the DMV so I can get a proper motorcycle license. Perhaps that will be me scootering around town after all!