In the unlikely event that there's anyone I haven't told yet, Amelia and I are going to be moving in together this summer. Or, more accurately, I'm going to be moving into her house in San Leandro. Yes, yes, I know, San Leandro isn't usually the first place on one's list of, say, vacation destinations, but the thing is that it's a really neat older house that she actually owns, with a huge back yard with fruit trees and oodles of garden space, and we're going to have bees and chickens and it's all going to be pretty spectacular.
However, San Leandro is still very much a suburb, and the nearest cute tea shop is in Alameda about eight miles away -- kind of too far even to bike on a daily basis, at least with my schedule. Grocery stores are also not exactly what I'd call "walkable," and though I don't personally shrink from the two-mile walk to and from the BART station, I imagine my friends would be more likely to visit me if said visit were not punctuated by said walk.
SO, if I'm going to be living in San Leandro, which I am, the conclusion is that I need a car. But I really don't want a car -- that is to say, one of those things that you pour expensive flammable substances into, the which you subsequently set fire to and dump the resultant smoke into the air in order to make it go -- so Amelia suggested that I look into Neighborhood Electric Vehicles. I'm not totally sure if she was serious, but the more research I do, the more it seems like this is exactly what I need. For longer (or faster) trips we can figure out how to trade her Camry (or maybe Prius someday soon, please please please?) back and forth, but for the vast majority of driving I would be doing, a cap of 35 mph and 40-45 miles would be absolutely fine...especially considering the fact that it would be virtually free to operate.
After a bunch of comparison shopping, it looks like the Kurrent by American Electric is my best bet. And it's nice that I would actually be able to afford it with my new job.
I don't know for sure if this is really going to happen, but I'm pretty excited about the idea. Some photos: