by, 2012-09-17 at 10:01 PM (54493 Views)
I didn’t know I was on an EV journey. I was just looking for a fun car. Something that would perform.
My BMW 540i had been totalled on I80 by a texting teen. I thought I’d be practical (a lapse in judgment), and I bought a really nice Prius. Serious lapse. The Prius did everything it was supposed to do. And it had the really cool tech package, leather seats, and was a nice slate gray. There really was nothing to complain about. But it didn’t go fast. It didn’t perform. I had to slow down for curves.
When I bought it, I’d momentarily forgotten how much I enjoy driving a car that performs, a life-long love affair that started in 1975 with a restored 1961 Porsche 911T. It's kind of hard to be happy with a Prius when what you want is a car that responds, that grins and speeds up when it sees a tight 20 mph curve. No excitement. Reliable. Boring.
Then I saw a video of the Tesla Model S. I literally sucked in my breath. Ohhh!! Who cares that it’s an EV?? I WANTED it. Breathtaking car and if it performed the way it said it would, it would be mine. Well ‘mine’ when it finally would go into production, possibly a 1+ year wait. Whaaat? Okay. I still wanted it. So I signed up for the Tesla newsletter, was pondering sending in my $5K deposit … and received an email from Tesla, telling me they would be giving Roadster test drives in the area and did I want one. Yes, I did. I did want one. And I said yes, knowing what would happen. I would fall in love with the Roadster and decide to buy one and … I was right.
That was Nov 2010. Unlike early Roadster owners, I only had to wait three months. But it was a LONG three months. I watched every video on YouTube. I lurked on TeslaMotorsClub.com, learning about EVs and Tesla and my new ride from Roadster owners and other EV enthusiasts. My coworkers started to avoid me in the hall, with the certainty of experience telling them I’d likely want to tell them about the Roadster. (Sorry!) I had a 240v/40amp outlet installed in my garage. I posted pictures of my new outlet on FB. I cleaned out my garage.
I picked up my Arctic White Roadster Sport 1194 in February 2011 in Menlo Park. It was waiting for me with a big red bow on top. Sitting through the paperwork was agony. I. Just. Wanted. The. Key. I impatiently sat through the obligatory walk-thru (I’d already memorized the manual and learned much more from the forum members. So give me the key already!)
I signed paperwork. More paperwork. (And yes, I acknowledged the need to keep the battery charged.) I think my pen ran out of ink before they let me stop signing paperwork. Yay. Off I went.
I went out for lunch with a friend. We admired the car from the window of the restaurant. I took pictures of the key and posted on facebook. (Yes, I know that is a beer next to it. It was not my beer.) We walked outside and admired the car. I ran a couple of errands. And then I began my 145 mile trek home, with approximately 180 ideal miles. Oops!
So I behaved. At first. I drove more slowly, less pure acceleration … until the actual miles started to creep up to the ideal miles. Play time! I made it home with about 20 miles to spare and a silly grin on my face.
I connected the charger and saw a beautiful blue light come on, begin to blink, the light turned yellow ... and my new car was charging and would be full again by the time I got up in the morning.
I was unaware that my electric journey had begun.
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