Get Around, ‘Round ‘Round… Trying to Get Around
Whenever I meet someone new here in New York City and tell them my story, they almost always ask me how the transition is going. I almost always tell them that it is going well. The truth is, yes, the transition has been mostly seamless. We absolutely lucked out and moved to one of the most child-friendly areas in Manhattan, and we’ve made fast, lifelong friends with a wonderful group of people.
There is one thing getting me down though, and that is the transportation issue. As I’ve said before, we sold both of our cars upon learning that we would be moving to Manhattan. It’s simply not necessary and is overly expensive to own and store a vehicle here in the city.
Without having a car to get around like normal people, we needed to find a stroller or two that we could rely on to get the kids around easily and comfortably. It was difficult at first to know which strollers to own- especially given the fact that we needed a double, and one that didn’t take up much room.
When Dr. J and I flew to NYC for the weekend to try to find an apartment, one of my major assignments (next to finding a pediatrician and preschool) was to do a little research on what parents usually own in the way of strollers. The most popular, by far was the Bugaboo. I wasn’t seeing many double strollers, but the ones that I did see were either the Maclaren Twin or the Phil & Ted’s. This meant that we would need to sell our current stoller and purchase a new, more city friendly style.
The Phil & Ted’s is a great option because it is in-line and the back seat is removable. Easy to get through super narrow grocery isles and fits nicely in elevators.
When Birdie was born, we bought the BOB Revolution Duallie, which is a double side-by-side jogging stroller. The BOB is (or WAS at least then) the most popular stroller to own in the Bay Area because it is great for active, adventurous lifestyles. It is easy to push and the quality is exceptional. It is not, however, great for city life because of it’s size (and is virtually unheard of here in the City). So we sold it and purchased the Phil & Ted’s Sport. I have to say, I nearly wept when I sold our BOB. I posted it on Craigslist and within FIVE minutes I had 4 offers. I loved that stroller.
We also purchased a Maclaren Twin Triumph for our public transportation use on planes, subways, taxis and buses. It folds really small and can be carried with one hand, not to mention it is really light and the kids really like it. It’s a definite must have for urban life. I can easily *AHEM* get around with both kids by myself with this stroller.
The Phil & Ted’s served it’s purpose for a while until Birdie started to get too big. She’s only about 22 lbs and actually small on average, for her age of 20 months. But her head started to hit the back bar of the rear seat. Not only was it completely uncomfortable, but every time I went to put her in the seat she screamed and cried. Frankly, I can’t blame her. I certainly wouldn’t want to sit back there either. We had experienced issues with the wheels, and a buckle in the back of the front seat broke leaving it saggy and uncomfortable. The final straw however, came last week when I was trying to get the Bubba to the doctor for a sick visit. It was pouring rain and one of the wheels went flat. Not only was I late, but I was sopping wet after having to pump a tire with both children crying in stroller (I may or may not have cried a little myself).
So I called REI, where we had purchased it, to see what I could do about it and I don’t think you’ll believe me when I tell you their response: “Send it back for a full refund or exchange on a new stroller. Shipping charges for new stroller are on us”. I was floored-my husband didn’t believe it. So we re-ordered our original stroller, the BOB Revolution, knowing the quality was exceptional. I trust that stroller to keep the kids safe, comfortable and happy and that to me is worth the sacrifice of size. I have yet to be yelled at, shunned or accosted by impatient New Yorkers (as I have been repeatedly warned) and I’m pretty darn happy with our new ride. I think the kids are too.
There are many new strollers that have just hit the market that look amazing. One in particular has caught my eye is the iCandy. It’s in-line and both, full size seats hold up to 44 lbs. There are a couple different versions of that type of stroller that are coming out, including Britax and City Mini. I am dying to see them in person.
Clearly, I have yet to find the perfect city stroller. I’m happy with our current two but I would really love to find THE ONE. I never thought my life would revolve so much around a stroller. Believe it or not, this type of thing has kept me up at night.
If you have a stroller that you cannot live without, please let me know! I’m open to any and all suggestions and welcome the input wholeheartedly.