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my last ride

Bob Eisenman

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So...I stopped at the liquor store(Thursday at dusk) to buy a six pack of beer. The clerk asked me if I wanted a receipt and I responded yes. Arriving back at my apt I decided that a ride on my EUC was more important than drinking beer and off I went continuing past the liquor store. One of the neighborhood dorks started repeating in a high squeal voice with deliberate pronunciation 'Electric Unicycle..Electric unicycle' as I passed the store. It seemed his  repitition of the phrase was to reinforce his correct identification of my mode of transit.

After a half mile the rail trail begins to the next town a popular fishing and jumping-swimming bridge (high tide) was full of jumper-swimmers. Where did you buy that , said one jumper as I continued toward my goal. In response to my not responding he shouted 'nice talking to you'.

While riding along the Rail trail headed toward Marblehead Public dock my cell phone started to buzz and ring as I approached a female foot Walker from behind. The phone caught her attention and she smiled as I rode by, pulling my phone from my pocket. The caller's number was unknown other than being from Massachusetts somewhere so I declined to accept the call. I'm also on the phone list for a pharmacy dispensary in 'Broken Arrow' somewhere down south. I Massachusetts I get the impression that responding to an unkown callers call is more important to the caller than whatever message they may have to say. Of course during the flu season the local health clinic makes blanket coverage calls announcing vaccines. If the message was important they could leave a voice mail. Before passing the woman I passed a blind Walker using a long blind persons stick to survey the trail that was before him. As I came within a few tens of feet he heard the crunch of gravel beneath my wheel and abruptly stepped to the side. I said some kind of greeting so he could get an audio fix on my position and he replied in kind with a greeting of his own.

The ride through Marblehead was uneventful, my flashlight was appropriate for dusk and I arrived at the harbor dock as evening diners for the restaurant stood outside taking in the view. A block before I passed a well known pub overflowing with patrons. A double deck party boat with people on the top floor motored by as the hired musicians kept up the alcohol  fueled party boat experience.

After taking in the view I opted to return, passing the sidewalk born patrons of the pub and on to the start of the rail trail. I navigated the crushed rock and mucky mud section without incident, always a bit of a nerve wracking thirty feet of trail. Short of an occasional adult size rabbit no people were passed on the trail until the last few feet where a single fisherman stood on the bridge crossing the tidal flow from the marsh.

Approaching the Liquor store from its rear driveway another local dork(maybe the same one) shouted 'touche' and some other french expressions that I could hardly hear as I passed by , just a block or so from where I live.

And that was three beers ago.

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i breathed a sigh of relief when I came to the end of your post and realized that this was really NOT your last ride. You know how to string your readers along! But nicely written, thanks for sharing.


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Yesterday on 'one of 'my last ride'(s) yesterday I dismounted awkwardly when, after attempting to ride on a curb to street compacted crushed rock fill  (handicapped access substitute) , the EUC sunk into the compacted gravel stalled and entrapped small chunks of stone into the into the wheel case space. The stones were manually shaken out. Later during the ride I crossed an intersection quickly in the passenger cross walk to beat out a car coming tona stop. A female pedestrian said 'in hot !..and whilr smiling..said ...'what the !!!'

During another of 'my last ride'(s) around Boston I decided to take the commuter rail back to my town. Waiting in the train station while eating a burger I looked at the board to see the gate and departure time. The board indicated a bus ride substitution due to rail bridge reconstruction between my town and the next town across the harbor. During the non-stop ride on bus carrying a half dozen passengers, me and my EUC the bus retraced the highway route travelled by me in the ambulance back in March when I fell off the EUC and broke my shoulder. Gosh these buses are wide in the lane, I thought as I sat behind the driver!

Later yesterday during one of 'my last ride'(s) I stopped at the mall for a charge where, next to the charging stations, a young black woman (vender) sat beside small electric lambs. For a fee, the vender allows the customer to ride on the slow moving electric lamb while directing it's motion. The vending concept includes Christmas sounding tunes emitted by the electric lamb rental display. Both adults and children ride the Electric lambs.

Before taking one of 'my last ride(s) I received an email from the Brigham and Women's hospital, where I was transported in March which is displayed below. While at the B&W a doctor listened to my rendition of falling off my EUC in March and described my enthusiasm as sounding 'like an addiction'. This morning, in the tv news channel, the B&W made the news because it was no longer ranked , as it has been before, in the top several (20) hospitals in the country. The B&W's response is that it is an 'institution' (Harvard teaching hospital) ride'r than a hospital.

This morning a Boston TV news story described a commuter rail accident where the conductor (twenty-nine ish year old) fell off the train during a routine inspection approaching a stop. The fall resulted in a 'serious' leg injury as the moving train rolled over him. His leg was mangled...he was in bad shape...said the TV news report.

On one of 'my last ride'(s) a home owner was seen practising casting on his lawn with a rod and reel. 

On another of one of 'my last ride'(s) I went over a freshly renovated bridge spanning a tidal Marsh flow area. A father and two kids were fishing off the bridge. 'Striped bass!....I asked'. Yep , he responded, but they are not biting as they 'should'. 'Maybe tonight?'  .... I asked(suggested)? The father agreed and then said 'take care' as I rolled by in my EUC.

Last night during 'my last ride' to the grocery store I carried an umberella to fend off very few rain drops. Buying less than thirty dollars in groceries and using the self checkout...a clerk chose (a rare event) to bag my groceries placing the items into separate plastic bags grouped by grocery type. Leaving with the bags I returned to my app locked EUC and back pack where I transferred the groceries into my back pack for the ride back (the rain had stopped).

This morning on the day after 'my last ride' my email contained a notification of completed jury service for the juryservice (Aug 3) summons ($2000 fine for disobeying the summons) which arrived several days after I broke my shoulder in March while riding my EUC in the winter.

My blog entry for miles ridden , after 'my last ride'  on my EUC  was updated to  '4025.6 miles' .







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