Papa’s got a brand new… Trike

What? Yep, that’s right – as of today, I’m a proud owner of a trike. The real thing, metallic grey with black details, rear suspension and a super comfortable seat and a heavy duty luggage rack and polished fenders and… wooohoo!

This was a typical semi-impulse purchase. I was toying with the idea of owning one of these for a long time now, but I never found a good enough justification for shelling out so much money (new trikes cost upwards of 2500 EUR, without any fancy extras such as fenders or parking brakes). This time I somehow managed to trick myself into believing that I definitely need one of these and now that I found it – I had to have it.

Now, if you’ve imagined one of those super-dooper Can-Am Spyder roadster bikes… well, you’re close. Only, it’s not a “Spyder” it’s a “Scorpion”. HP Velotechnik Scorpion, to be exact. My trike is pre-owned and already somewhat old-ish, but in a very good condition and all set up and ready to fly…

HP Velotechnik Scorpion
HP Velotechnik Scorpion 20″

I immediately went to have it registered with the police. You know, for the peace of mind. It’s a service that Berliner Polizei offers for free. All they need is your full name, date and place of birth and the frame number. Fill out the form and this data is then put in some sort of central police computer, “in case your bike gets lost”, as the policeman said. “Or found”. Uh. I sure hope my trike doesn’t get “lost” in the first place…

I got the trike from a guy who lives in a quiet side street in the borough of Freidrichshain, near the famous and busy Warschauer Str. Of course, I took it for a test drive and made a few rounds before purchase. And when it was finally mine, I sat there, in that comfy seat, touching the fenders, the handlebars, feeling the seat mesh, like a child. Definition of happiness (or at least of the impuls-purchase consumer type of happiness).

And then I pedaled away. Slowly. Enjoying the ride on this beautiful sunny day in Berlin. Summer breeze playing with my hair, everything feels like a dream. I mean, just try to imagine – you’re lying totally relaxed in a recumbent seat, but still moving forward. Crazy…

After a few hundred meters I reached the junction. The next street was quite a bit busier. I looked left, right, all clear. A tram was approaching from the right, but he was slow and still far away. So I sticked out my left arm to let everybody know I’m turning in that direction and pushed on the pedals. Wroooom!

Yeah, right. Wroooom my ass. The moment I turned into the street, I realized that the wheel spacing between the two front wheels is almost as wide as the tram rails. What the fcuk am I going to do now? “I’ll get stuck. With those thin wheels? For sure. I’ll get stuck. I know it. I already see it coming.”

“Ok, dude”, I said to myself. “Take it easy”. “Just relax and do your best not to get stuck in the tram rails…” Summer breeze instanly disappeared as I was carefully trying to pedal between the rails. Fcuk summer breeze anyway. “I should have waited for the tram to pass before turning into this street.” Uh. I looked back to see if the tram was approaching and when I saw the huge yellow monster right behind me I panicked. And then my left wheel got stuck in the rails. I tried to brake but that did not work out too good. Fcuk the brake, too.

I then literally stood up from the trike in the middle of the street, trying to get the wheel out of the rail track. Not sure if the tram driver was trying to be friendly or perhaps wanted to help, but when he rang his bell, I exploded. Bam. Fcuk this beautiful summer day and fcuk Friedrichshein and tram rails and impatient me for not waiting for the tram to pass… Yes. And fcuk trams.

But ok… I quickly pulled myself together, gently took out the wheel from the rail while that huge tram was standing less than two meters behind me. I put the wheel back on the asphalt and sloooowly reached Warschauer Str. going in a zig-zag motion across the rails, taking care not to get stuck again. Warschauer Str. has a wide bicycle lane all the way, so I really enjoyed the rest of the ride from Friedrichshein back to my place. You know, summer breeze and all…

And that was the very first trike ride in my very first own trike. Next goal (for the weekend): a somewhat longer “tour”; visiting friends who live just outside of Berlin (22 km)…

Stay tuned, I’ll let you know how that went!

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