For years I’ve wanted to go on a Segway but in the UK they’re not allowed on roads or pavements so the only way to go on one is to go off-road. My mum and dad bought me a Segway experience for my birthday in April and after a busy summer I finally found the time to go.
I took my sister Claire and we set off down to Windsor, to Bray Lake next to Eton Dorney. The Segway Experience started with a trial run. We each took turns to stand on it, make it go forward and turn. Claire was tentative. I tilted forward and went for it. So far so good. Once we had all made the thing actually move we were given one each and told to practise around a little test course. I instantly loved it, and Claire got more confident.
“Did you see that guy on Coach Trip who fell off and ran over himself?” I asked Claire. Coach Trip is a British TV show where a coach load of people are sent around Europe doing unusual local activities. Each series usually involves a Segway city tour of time kind where someone always crashes. “Yeah” she replied, “I thought that wasn’t possible, did he just not have the right training?”. I suggested he was probably trying to show off for the cameras and that we had nothing to worry about. You can see where this is going.
After the trial we were led further into the woods and were free to whiz around the woodlands for half an hour. It was fun. All was going well! I filmed a little, took a few photos, and picked up speed. Claire was close behind me.
I picked up a bit too much speed though, hit a bump in the path and clipped a tree. Instinctively I put my left leg forward to try and stop myself, but lost balance and fell. The process of falling made the Segway lean forwards, which made it go faster – over my leg, which was now under the Segway while I was sitting down on it.
Not my finest moment I have to say.
Claire narrowly missed me, and I got back onto my feet clutching my private lady area which didn’t agree with being thrown towards a metal handlebar. Miraculously nobody else saw, and we carried on a bit more cautiously.
What’s left of my birthday present is a bruised thigh and ankle and some very funny memories.