Thursday, May 14, 2009

Today's Maclaren Adventure

I love our Maclaren Stroller. After I rolled over our Maclaren Triumph stroller with the car last year I upgraded us to the Maclaren Quest (it's big advantage is a convenient storage pocket and four point reclining seat!) and it has served us well, travelling twice to Europe (and thoroughly having the crap knocked out of it on the cobblestones of Rome).

The Maclaren is great. It's super light and easy to open/fold. I love our Bugaboo but for daily use in and out of the wagon the Maclaren is a breeze. That being said there are a few design flaws. First, it flips. Now I think all strollers will do this depending on the weight of the load which one inevitably straps on to the handles, but the Maclarens are so light that even just the diaper bag will cause it to capsize once baby is no longer acting as ballast.

Okay, we can live with that as a consequence for the lightweight nature. Fine.

Problem two: While Maclaren does provide you with a lovely plastic cover for use during rainstorms (or what we like to call the oxygen tent), in the event of a rain storm rain water may be kicked up from the tires to the underside of the stroller (and thus directly soaking the seat and your baby's bottom). We learned this the hard way. Can we not add some sort of a flexible plastic/rubber coating on the underside of the seat to prevent this??

Finally, Problem Three(aside from no cupholders): Another consequence of the lightweight nature of the Maclaren is that it tends to (when baby is not in the stroller) get blown away very easily. Yes, I said blown away. Case in point: Today it was a bit breezy. When Miss B. and I were packing it in after hitting up the Woolly Lamb in Pennington I hit the breaks on the Maclaren and left it next to the side of the car while I got Miss B. into her car seat. After a few moments in the back with Miss B. getting her settled, I straighten up and turn to the stroller to fold it and put it in the trunk.

What ho, there is no stroller. So I look to the back of the car and think maybe it just rolled a little bit. No Stroller. I step around to the back of the car to get a better glimpse on where it could be and what do I see? Our Stroller rolling down a hill and heading towards the Dunkin' Donuts two buildings away from where we're parked. Clearly the Roman cobblestones must not have affected the alignment because the Stroller was making a nice straight beeline down the roadway. A man in a bicycle passed it and stared. People in a car stopped since it was heading straight for them. Finally it bottomed out at the bottom of the hill and came to rest up against a curb. I just shook my head and laughed out loud. I thought to myself, "no problem, we'll just drive down there and get it". Then I remembered that my car keys were still in the aforementioned convenient storage pocket attached to the back of the stroller.

Yup. Since we must not have had enough exercise today, I had to get Miss B. back out of the car and then I carried her down to get the stroller. And that was with the break on!

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