stranded but lucky

After a week of chemo and raging hand-foot syndrome, it was nice to get out. I got on my scooter to take a little trip to shoot some photos and then do some minor grocery shopping. The scooter won’t carry much, but I can manage to pick up a few essential items when the only thing left in the fridge is ketchup, capers and lemons. It seemed to be going well until, about half a mile from home, the scooter slowed significantly. When I looked at the battery power, it looked like the reading was down from the green zone to the yellow-bordering-on-red zone. The scooter was moving so slowly that it felt as though it would stop at any moment. 

Immediately, I turned it around to head back home without stopping to go shopping or to do anything else. Not even to collect my $200 when passing GO. Hoping with all my might that I would make it, I pursued the course. About seven blocks from home I barely made it across the street and onto the upward slope of the sidewalk ramp when it came to a dead stop. Right there. Smack in the middle of the ramp. I sat there helpless.

I figured that having AAA would save the day. They could come and pick up the scooter, take me home and that would be it. When I called them, however, they said they were not equipped to manage handling a scooter. For liability reasons they could not even consider trying to help out because the scooter might fall off of their truck.

As I sat there thinking about what to do next, a woman wearing a US Postal Service uniform approached me and asked whether I needed some help. She helped get my scooter off of the ramp and onto the sidewalk next to a building  out of the way of passersby. I thanked her profusely and said I would try to contact a friend to take me home to get the cord for recharging my scooter and hoped that one of the businesses in the area would allow me to plug into their outlet and recharge my scooter sufficiently to make the short trip home. She would not have it. She insisted on driving me home and then back again, where one of the business owners allowed me to pull my scooter inside and plug it in for about twenty minutes to recharge.

I don’t know how I was so fortunate to have not just one but, in the end, three, people help me to watch my scooter while another drove me home and back with the charging cord and another allow me to plug into their business’ electrical outlet. All of them were most gracious in helping, despite my overwhelming embarrassment. As anyone can imagine, I was most grateful to all three of them. After sitting and having a scone and a soda at the establishment where I was charging up the scooter, I packed up a treat for my husband and got on the road again. Thankfully, I made it all the way, with not much charge to spare. I was never more pleased to get in the door unlike most days I would just as soon be out for an entire afternoon. 

After this near disaster I learned a lesson: always charge up the scooter completely before going anywhere, and keep an eye on the battery reserves while I am out and about. It probably would not hurt to keep the charging cord with me at all times in case I overextend my touring and need to recharge mid-trip. Being well prepared with my scooter is a bit new, but it’s a lesson I will surely remember.

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© 2004–2012 Donna Peach. All rights reserved.


3 responses to “stranded but lucky

  1. There are angels in our midst. It pained me to read this and I felt the helplessness you must have also felt. You continue to inspire me. When I might have just stayed home, you ventured out. Wish I lived closer, Donna…but I do live close to you in my heart.

  2. Just when the news seems to be all bad, it is refreshing to hear about some good people who just go about their lives helping others. Let us take this lesson unto ourselves.

  3. Oh, dear Donna! As I read your post, I was there with you, every step of the way. It’s wonderful to know there are kind-hearted people who will still extend themselves to help someone. It’s also probably a good thing you were in a nice neighborhood. Yes, charge your phone and your scooter.


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