Tuesday, June 27, 2006
It's a very affluent area, and one of the symptoms of this seems to be that local shops are few and far between with few or no bus stops, as everyone has at least one car. The nearest local little shop of any description is a good fifteen minutes walk each way, even for a healthy person, which is beyond my capability. Therefore when I have been staying with Steve, I haven't so much as been able to go out for a pint of milk or a bar of chocolate, even on a good day.
However, Leamington does have a Shopmobility scheme, who will basically hire me a mid-range mobility scooter for a week for a sum of money roughly equal to my weekly high-rate mobility DLA, which seems perfectly fair to me! They spent some time doing a little training course with me, reversing round cones and all sorts, and after this week is up I can either return the scooter, give up and say goodbye; return the scooter and buy a shiny new one of my own; or not return the scooter, give them more money, and extend the hire for another week/month/whatever.
So far I have:
Driven home from the town centre (took nearly an hour)
Gone to the local shops to buy some things for dinner
Gone to post a letter
Had an explore around the district
And I plan to:
Go to the library
Go get a massage
Go for a drink
Have a haircut
Go to the shops again
Explore some more
I'm very definitely considering getting a Cadiz which is a couple of levels up from what I've got on rental at the moment. It has suspension (which after my excursions so far is a BIG selling point), a taller, comfier seat, goes up to twice as fast, and has comfier handles. I had a go on the showroom model at ShopMobility. There's a load more features too, indicator lights and stuff like that, but it's mostly faff - what I've listed is the main differences that make it worth paying more.
Scooters are expensive things, even a cheapey McCheap one costs several hundred pounds and one that is mid-range (4mph, 15 mile range) is upwards of £1,000. Savings can be made, but that has to be weighed against what you get for your money - for instance, you may save a couple of hundred pounds buying online, but can you call a local firm when something goes wrong?
There's still a fair bit of the week to go though, so we'll see how things pan out.
at 11:01 pm