Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Riding my scoot- lots of fun

So, I went for my first 'ride' on Sunday. I have pretty much only had my scooter as a means of getting around. A cheaper option than a car. But I have some swing dancing friends who have motorbikes as a fun way of getting around. They also have cars! So, it was decided that we should all go for a 'ride' together, somewhere out of Canberra a little way.

We decided on Tidbinbilla (I hope I've spelled that correctly) and rode out there. It was quite hilly and we were travelling for the most part at about 80-85km/h. That way my scooter could keep up with the other bikes, I've worked out my absolute top speed is 90km/h and that's downhill. It was probably around the halfway mark that I noticed that my petrol reserves were a little low, or rather, a lot low. We made it to the big dishes, but there was no way I was making it back to Canberra, or even to Tharwa, another 20kms away to get petrol.

I'm now forever indebted to my friend Stephen. He found some hose from the security guys and syphoned out petrol for me. First, from his own 1300cc bike into my scooter, and later, because it was too hard to get the petrol flowing, from Kristina's 500cc bike into a coke bottle. He filled the 600ml bottle three times and all of a sudden I had a lot of petrol in the tank. We made it safely back to Canberra and I hit 90km/h on the way back into town, on a hill, probably with a tail wind.

It was so much fun, riding with other riders, nice and safe in the middle of the pack of 5. The weather was perfect for riding, blue skies, a few clouds and a lovely 27 degrees, lovely. The riding did, however, make me want to get a bigger bike. Say a 250cc scooter, something that can do 100km/h no worries. But the sensible side of me knows that is silly. I'm only in Canberra for another 6-7 months and once I'm back in Melbourne, I don't know that I'll need that much power. The little 100cc should do the job admirably. So, I just have to cope, knowing that my riding could be a lot more fun, out on the open road, if I had a bigger bike. I promise Mum that I won't use my insurance money to buy a new scoot, I promise!

The riding part of the day ended at Gus' Cafe in the city. I nearly lost my mouthfull of food at one stage though. Stephen told us about how he'd once headbutted a duck. The duck had been flying up in front of his bike, and hadn't made it high enough. It smacked into his helmet, but continued up and I'm pretty sure survived. Funny, funny stuff. I've been hit with bugs before while riding. I've even had a bee in my helmet. But I've never headbutted a bird before. Nor do I think I'm likely to. I'm sure there's time enough for that in the coming years of riding.

Sunday was a lovely day out with the gang of swinging riders. 2 scooters, myself and JJF, 3 bikes, Stephen, Marianne and Kristina. Perfect weather and great friends who looked after me and made sure I could make it back home. I think next time I might ask Stephen if I can ride pillion on his bike. That thing is enormous. It's like sitting on an armchair. Totally cool and really noisy.

Another note about the scoot, riding and the like. I passed my Ps test a few weeks ago, but only managed to get myself to the motor registry yesterday. So I am now officially a P plate scooter rider. I just have to attach the P plate to the back of the scooter and I'm ready to roll. It took some 25 mins to see someone though. Luckily, I'd brought some sewing with me. I'm in the process of repairing a dress I made VE for her birthday last year, the lining had come a little loose and one of the straps was also starting to come away from the dress. In that 25 mins, I not only fixed those problems, but I also read about 1/3 of a paper. It turned out to be a rather successful wait. I'm now waiting on my housemate to turn up with some cable ties from the mouse house. I'm going to use them to attach the P plate.

1 comment:

Lien said...

I hope you don't mind me leaving a comment on your blog. But the post about scooter riding in Canberra was what made me find you. I'm considering the move to Canberra from Sydney and thought about getting a scooter! Just needed some info on getting a licence. Is there a "special" scootr licence without having to get the whole motorbike one? I tried to find it on the Canberra motor registry website, but not much info there.

Thanks in advance!