Talk of the town: E for Freedom

Our columnist recalls halcyon days on his first vehicle.

By Sean Maddox

In August 2018 I headed to Vaughan Avenue in Halifax with the same excitement I had over 30 years ago when I bought my first motorized scooter.  I was filled with memories of cruising the city in high school and university on that gold Yamaha Elite. Whether it was to school, work, practice, or a night out, that first scooter proved to be more than a ride: it was freedom. The freedom felt being able to zip here and there in no time, on my own. The freedom to park in tiny spots or offer a close friend a safe ride.

Three decades have passed since that first purchase. Over the years I owned a range of vehicles, learned to drive a standard in the mountains of Appalachia; through mud and stone in Africa; found what real off-roading means in Nunavut and navigated the transition from a navigator to a GPS. This time, the big difference was that the fuel source had changed. Now, instead of gasoline, the machine I purchased was powered by batteries, four lithium batteries to be exact. The batteries charged in no time, and a full charge was able to get me to Rainbow Haven beach and other hot spots around Halifax. 

I had just moved back to Nova Scotia and needed to find a new home, vehicle, job, and such. The freedom offered by the scooter was just as I remembered and had hoped. Even better than I remembered because it was an E-Scooter:  “E” for Electric, Environmental, and Efficient. My E-Scooter was built to go up to 50 km per hour, so it was treated as a bicycle under the legislation of the day making the third E, efficiency, even more advantageous. 

That scooter helped in so many ways. Even did its job in a snowstorm or two. It allowed me to travel when and where I needed with low costs (no insurance required), convenience, and the wonderful feelings on the ride. It allowed me to get around the city with ease and speed.  

As life unfolded at home in Nova Scotia I found need for a larger vehicle for work, art and play.  Constant clothing changes and helmet hair didn’t work well with consulting in Atlantic Canada, nor could I continue to carry excessive weights of art and supplies on these small machines. So off went another scooter to the growing market, and in came another four wheeled, petrol- powered car.

To this day all I can say from my experiences is you get what you pay for in the e-scooter market. Save yourself a headache or two, buy the best for your size you can afford, and keep your head up and eyes wide open.

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