There I was looking around Carl's workshop while he looked into why my previously so reliable Green Vespa kept cutting out every time the engine was in idle or when I pulled the throttle while in first gear. My own quick fix was to replace the spark plug (which looked like it needed changing anyway) but that didn't solve the problem. So, for a day or two, I made it to my intended destination by revving the scooter like mad before releasing the clutch in rush hour Dublin traffic.
Maybe, from now on I'd be more sympathetic to all the rempit revving their hairdryers back home, annoying everyone around them and impressing no one but themselves. Who knows? Maybe like myself, it could just be that their rides were constantly cutting out too and they didn't actually mean to be the little pieces of manure to society that they are. It's not their fault after all, eh? Nah. Don't think so.
Next in line was the carb and while Carl looked into that, my attention was to other bits and bob that were lying around the shop. There were a collection of engine parts, some old but seemingly still usable seats, a collection of some quite tasty looking Vespa frames (old, older and one or two that probably belonged in a museum once restored to its former glory) and some shiny pieces of chrome racks collecting dust in one corner.
After playing around with the carb's idle screw, the Vespa was running smoothly again. I couldn't resist and asked whether there were any rear racks amongst the tangled pieces of tube metal. A quick look around the spot revealed that there was at least one, an FA Italia rear rack and for the quoted price of €30 it was mine, fixed to the scoot and all. All it needed was some cable ties to hold it in place (to stop the rattling from one of the broken springs), a wipe down and some chrome polish.
I was never keen on getting a rear rack on my scooter or for that matter, anything that would just add unnecessary weight to the Vespa. But for €30, it was worth the experiment especially since the rack could be classified as more of a necessity these days. Being a dad to three kids, there's always the chance that I'd run out of something to eat at home. The scooter's humble glovebox is fine if I was just buying food for myself but with three kids and the other half as well, some more luggage room was needed.
Earlier today, we ran out of milk so, on the way back from work I stopped by the local supermarket and headed straight to the dairy aisle. I instinctively went for the 2 litre bottle but then I remembered that I had a rack on my Vespa. With some elastic straps or a luggage net, I could go bigger. Why should I stick with a mere 2 litres when I could go for the 3 litre option instead? Hell, why not 5 litres and I could save myself another trip or two to the supermarket. Why, the possibilities are just endless...