She’s become an icon in Perth, Scotland, and a virtual hit on the Internet. Barbel Roerig is the 74-year-old retired architectural technician who has been dubbed “Scooter Gran”.
Roerig actually started using the scooter nine years ago, after she saw Oslo airport staff carrying things on one, but only recently became an international darling. The scooter gives her safe transportation and takes her places the bus doesn’t. It is easy on her knees and easily carries her bags as she scoots around on her errands.
She told the Scotsman:
When I am coming back from my allotment with potatoes and apples, it’s absolutely perfect. I use it for all my shopping now as well. Most of the shops let me take my scooter in while I get my messages.
I get a lot of waves from young men, which I enjoy very much, and people yelling out to me from their cars.
I go along Tay Street a lot and the skateboarders come past me and they all know me and treat me like one of them. They think I am pretty cool.
A skateboarder whizzing by her posted the video below on YouTube. He and his pals stopped to meet the German-born Roerig. When one of the young skateboarders asked her to give him a high 5, she didn’t understand what he wanted. I could see the confusion on her face, but the young guys didn’t catch on.
'I'm not surprised people are enthusiastic about Scooter Gran — go to any other city in Scotland and you'll find loads of interesting characters, but the majority of Perth people are too scared to be seen as anything less than ordinary.'
Barbel Roerig just might create a whole new global market for scooters. I’m inspired. I might look into one myself. I have my eye on snazzy white model made in Italy.
Scooter Gran, you give me hope.