Last week I stopped by Genuine Scooters of Arlington to pick up my “dream” scooter – a Genuine Rattler 110. After paying just over $3000 out the door I was as committed to heading to the Arctic Circle as I could be. I spent many hours a day last week putting miles on it around the city in hopes of breaking it in before I left for my trip and had tons of fun with it. A scooter in DC is amazingly handy, even though I do live in some fear of getting a parking ticket for all the illegal parking I do…
Then it went pear shaped – on Saturday, my best friend’s sister Carla was in town to visit and we rode the scooter down towards a big park in Virginia to meet up with Larry and the family. After a wonderful hour ride down the George Washington Parkway the scooter suddenly gave up the ghost! It locked up and died at 45MPH and refused to run properly afterwards. I could get it to start but it would not rev up and push the scooter forward very fast, even under full throttle.
We left it on the side of the road and went for dinner, after which we all agreed that Melissa would drive us back up to the dealer in her minivan, an incredibly kind and thoughtful thing to do. We drove back to the scooter and quickly realized it was much bigger than it looks – there was no way we were going to get that in the minivan without all of the seats down, and they had simply too much stuff (and too many kids) in the van. Instead, I had to pay a tow truck $150 to “tow” my little scooter all the way back up to Arlington.
It was almost worth it just to see how silly the scooter looked tied down on the huge double flatbed truck…
Yesterday I went back to the dealer to have them look at it – on a side note, I know scooters aren’t a huge deal but I found it weird that less than a week later they did not recognize me at all or even remember that they had sold a Rattler last week! Bizarre. Regardless, I got a call from them in the afternoon to pick it up and headed back in to take it home. When I asked the mechanic what the problem was, he said he wasn’t sure – he changed the gear oil and opened up the entire top end of the engine and inspected everything and it looked fine aside from maybe a small scratch or two. After putting it all back together it ran fine, so he figures a small rock or something somehow got into the engine.
Uhhh…. what? This is what I have to worry about now? Oh boy. At least the scooter appears solid for now… time to go back out to put some more miles on it and see if it breaks again!
The big trip is still on target for leaving next week… I’ve been busy putting together all my gear and getting everything ready but it’s definitely going to be a frantic few days.