When your legs don’t work, thrills get a bit thin on the ground. Just standing on my wobbly legs is risky so mountain climbing or white water rafting is off the menu.
My mobility scooter has become my legs. But it won’t go everywhere. It balks at steep slopes and even a bit of grass can bring it to a standstill.
But there is a mobility scooter that can cater to the thrill-seeking wheelie. It’s called a Terrain Hopper and looks a bit like a quad bike or a military jeep. Really macho! I might get a camouflage outfit, or black leathers, if I get one.
I tried one out for a test drive in the most challenging weather so far this winter.
Sam, from Terrain Hopper, parked it outside my house just as hail started flinging itself down. It was a bit difficult to get into with my reluctant legs but eventually I was strapped in and heading down to the seafront.
Halfway there a huge flash of lightening landed just in front of me. (felt like it anyhow) and hail piled up inside my coat. The coward in me turned round. The roller coaster fan in me carried on to the beach.
The Hopper can do deep water, ploughed fields, woodland, mountain sides and takes steps in its stride! No need for dropped kerbs, you just aim for the step and up you go.
Driving on the beach in the snow was very thrilling. Speeding along on the edge of the sea and leaving wide tracks in the whiteness. Best fun I’ve had since the Dreamland roller coaster, years ago.
Viking Bay has a steep slope of sand in winter, the berm, built to protect the beach huts from high tides. “Try it on the slope” said Sam. So I did. And got stuck! It’s the only thing the hopper can’t do, deep fine sand. My wheels were digging me in deeper, the snow was pouring down and I was identifying with Scott of the Antarctic or Lawrence of Arabia. Or some other hero on a mad expedition.
“Go backwards!” Shouted Sam. Backing worked to get me out of the sand dune but then I was heading fast towards the sea and couldn’t see behind me. “Try going backwards up the slope!” advised Sam. But the four wheel drive super scooter just couldn’t cope. Broadstairs defeated the best mobility scooter in the country!
Going back up the high street and terrifying some of the traffic, the snow stopped and people were stopping me to ask about my wonderful vehicle.
“That looks fun!” a woman shouted. It was.
To buy one will cost about £15,000. I wish….
But what I also wish is that the technology that has gone into making scooting safe and thrilling could be available to everyone whose legs are packing up on them. I want to not worry about steps and kerbs and grassy fields or tipping over on a slope or getting onto the beach etc etc. Our best technology has often come out of space research. I need a moon rover and I need it now!