If my stroller could sing (or talk, for that matter), it would surely sing the words to the infamous song of this entry’s title, from Queen. Today, the aluminum rod that holds the rear right wheel to the frame snapped. No previous creaks and no warnings-just a sudden snap, followed by a wheel now turning on an angle to the ground, instead of being perpendicular to it, and pulling the plug on my ‘show’ of driving the kids around the city with complete ease, like an unpaid electrical bill.
But this ‘show’, must go on-I have to be able to get out with both kids since we walk everywhere and don’t own a vehicle here. This stroller WAS our vehicle, our KITT, our General Lee. I’ve had tire blow outs and had to put new tires on it, and even had the tires rotated. I’ve cleaned it, buffed it, and shined it. In Poland recently, I learned how to change the inner tube when I got a flat. I intended on putting an odometer on it, but never got around to it but it has most definitely crossed hundreds of kilometers. This stroller let me get around everywhere with so much ease and comfort-I could easily pack up the kids in it, push it with one hand while I dragged my grocery trolley behind me.
Now, I have to think of something else to do. Little Miss Stubborn should walk more often, but she is also Little Miss Lazy. She will walk for ten minutes or so, and then starts to cry and wants to sit down, or be carried in my arms. Clearly, this will not work if I just take one umbrella stroller with the Albino Hulk already sitting in it, but I cannot take two strollers out with me. Letting Samantha sit while Jakob walks is also out of the question since he runs everywhere, including into traffic and trams. We have another set of wheels that we impulsively purchased of Milano’s Kijiji site a few months back, but I may as well be pushing Greece’s debt in it-it’s so heavy and difficult to move forward with. Of that stroller, I am not the biggest fan.
I contacted Phil and Ted’s online to discuss the situation and if there is anything they can do since this stroller has a special place in my heart and I am truly bummed it is parked, and going no where. I don’t think it’s repairable, but then again, I have no clue about how to fix such things so if you think there is a way to mend this fracture, PLEASE let me know. I’m afraid I will have to leave it on the curb in front of our apartment block, for AMSA to pick it up. AMSA is Milano’s waste management company and they do garbage collections across the city. They will also come to your house and pick up unwanted furniture and you can request this service online. We recently had an old tv bench that we didn’t like or need, (we don’t have a tv or a car; we are italian pioneers), and since it was battered and bruised, we decided to literally send it to the curb. On AMSA’s website, you can request a pick-up of your old furniture by selecting a date and time, and also indicating what particular item you are discarding. If you bring your furniture to the curb yourself, the service is free. If you ask for AMSA personnel to come to your apartment to fetch it, then you have to pay a small fee. The process is quite easy and organized to sift through, that I was flabbergasted such a clear and coherent system existed in Italy.
The night before our scheduled pick-up, we threw the kids in the crib, flipped on a cartoon, and headed upstairs in our flat to dismantle the piece de resistance. Getting it down our narrow stair case was quite the adventure between Dave and I. It resembled the episode of Friends where Ross, Rachel, and Chandler have to move a couch upstairs-I was yelling ‘Pivot! …..Pivot!!!’, Dave was telling me to lift my side more, to move more one way, I was yelling at him to hold on and not rush me, that I was going to let go (my biceps are frightfully tiny), that I had no more room to move, etc, etc. Somehow, the shelf made it downstairs, our marriage survived, and Dave rolled the bench through the elevator and to the curb, using the grocery trolley as assistance.
What will happen with our stroller remains to be seen. I am sure adventurous excursions await for me and the kids while we adjust to getting out and having Samantha walk more. For now, we wait and in the mean time, I have been giving Little Miss Stubborn pep talks about walking everywhere. Already, she’s not convinced. Below, a gallery of our beloved stroller, in happier, laughable days.