Segway: Persecuted in UK, positively flourishing in Greece
The poor Segway has been prosecuted out of sight in the UK: Not allowed on the pavements, it isn’t even street legal. So I’d never really seen Segways in action.
However, a few months ago I saw my first Segway on the streets of Glyfada, a southern Athens seaside suburb. Then I saw another, and then another—all piloted by serious-looking middle-aged men intent on shopping. Now the Segway virus has spread. Just now I saw five Segway-mounted teenagers scattering pedestrians in every direction. It’s only a matter of time before someone gets injured, I suppose.
But then the poor pedestrian in Greek towns and cities is an endangered species. With hardly any parking restrictions and almost every street crossing blocked by irresponsibly parked cars, walking is not for wimps. Car drivers simply park wherever they can, totally without consideration. Indeed, they must park right in front of their destination or they would have to become temporary pedestrians. If there are any rules, which I seriously doubt, the police do not enforce them.
Even if you can negotiate the vehicles, you have to keep your wits about you to avoid falling over jutting paving stones or tripping down holes where decorative trees have died and gone. If you do not want to take your life in your hands, avoid walking around suburban Athens. Better to get a Segway and feel like a king.