I love trying new things. I rode an elephant once just to see what it was like and realized I wouldn't want to ride one for transportation purposes. I've held snakes and 'gators, and ridden the fastest roller coaster Harry Potter had to offer. I've been in a race car that zoomed around the track at neck straining speed. This summer I tried something new as well. I rode a segway. I rode a segway on a hilly, curvy path and wondered if I should have my head examined for being so reckless with my life.
On a segway, I am the only one in control. There is no other driver, no one else running the controls, no professional standing by to save me. It was just me and this vertical monster that seemed intent on throwing me off backwards. The instuctor did say, "don't jump off, you'll hurt yourself." Staying on felt just as threatening.
Riding a segway is much like learning to ride a bike. I tried too hard. I clutched the handles too tight, but it doesn't steer or make the machine go. I stood too straight, I bent my knees too much. I learned to lean and was surprised the machine went where I aimed. If I leaned backwards, yep, it moved in that direction as well. I tried not to do that too often! I learned pressure from my feet made it go fast or slow. No pedals like in a car, only my feet guiding me around and up and down the path.
By the time my thirty minute ride was over, I was exhausted, in a good way. I had used muscles that don't normally get a work-out. I visualized one of my characters being forced to ride a segway and smiled at how humorous the scene could be. More imporantly I learned about maneuverability and a serious study of muscle control I hadn't thought about in a long time. Both good things to have for future stories.
Riding a segway was a thrilling experience and one I might try again. How about you? Have you tried anything new and different lately? Perhaps for research or just for fun. Tell us about it!
Til next time ~