Whether arriving on time for a morning lesson, avoiding the summer heat, or returning late at night after partying, electric scooters are a popular and quick convenience on Grounds. That said, however, I have never flown one myself. I live on a student budget and prefer to use the money to continue buying my weekly box of frozen waffles.
It’s fascinating to see how the scooters appear early in the morning, organized in neat lines at their designated landing pads, fully loaded and ready to tackle tiny sidewalks and crowds of students. They’re kind of like a kitten recently brought into a new home – energetic and great at teleporting and digging dust into nooks and crannies you didn’t even know kittens could find. In my experience, however, once scooters are released into the wild, they tend to go rogue.
Here are a few places I didn’t know scooters could reasonably inhabit – but it all happens when they go rogue.
- In the middle of the sidewalks
This is the most common place to find a roaming electric scooter. They only strayed slightly and are only one big rotation away from being in the right spot. Sometimes they become an extra step for the day. Since I’m not fighting over three floors a day like I did my freshman year, I have to make up the difference somewhere. However, sidewalks are made for walking, not walking or scooting for that matter, so scooters become quite dangerous. It’s like having cats trying to trip you down stairs and no one should have to try their luck with a ramp to avoid the cat.
2. In the middle of the road
Luckily, it’s a less common place for scooters. I’ve only had one sighting of an abandoned scooter in the middle of a road – notably one that was barely wide enough for two cars to pass each other. The scooter got too big for his pants on the open pavement.
3. In GrandMarc’s Garage
This scooter was surely trying to blend in with a new crowd. It sadly only spent a week going unnoticed before it was disputed, allegedly because it hadn’t parked in the compact spot.
4. In the bushes
Unbeknownst to me for a very long time, scooters have actually been in cahoots with University squirrels. Somehow they ended up in various positions in the leafy foliage. One seemed to be surfing a tall boxwood tree, others were diving headfirst into the branches while some were just sprawled among the leaves, visibly tired from hours of carrying students around.
5. In a tree
Guess the birds are to blame for this one. They can be very convincing.
6. In a swimming pool
Dreaming of new lands, a scooter took the plunge. It is unfortunate to report that she could not pass for a technologically advanced version of an electric eel and soon sank to the bottom. If he had ever been picked up, I don’t see how he could have joined his fleet of now-scuffed but recharged friends.
7. Running on rooftops
It was only in urban legend that a brave scooter scaled a Greek house and rolled onto the roof. The scooter had heard that the view of Charlottesville was better from up there, although I can’t imagine the nuisance it was to get it back down.