Monday, November 16, 2009

Drive an original scooter

The word "scooter" is definitely English (it's a motor-powered bicycle) but the actual object was invented in Italy (in Genova exactly) in 1945 by two Italian engineers who called it Vespa (bee wasp). Since then the concept was copied in many places in the world - especially in Japan - but Italians continue to produce Vespas. Hence these two ones that are genuine models. They belong to Motori Italiani, a place that only sells original Vespas - and can even customize them for you. FYI, the black and white calendar is now ready, you can find it here. A big merci to those first customers who already bought the color one!


  1. what a great photo... how in the world did you take it??

  2. So, Eric -- Are you going to trade your scooter in for one of these very cool models? I would love to have a red one like this!

  3. Oh, wait. Just went to the link and saw a purple one! Where did you take this photo anyway?
    The calendars are both superb. Might just need one of each.

  4. Looks like a Mastercard add, with these colors you know....

    Check out Eric's everyday original photos, PRICELESS.

  5. Love this composition. The red one seems to have something to say, but the yellow one won't hear of it.

    On the website, the pale pink with white seat rocks my socks!

  6. Just how far off that balcony were you hanging, Eric!!?? However far it was, it got you another great photo.

    They look like little cows getting ready to head out of the paddock to me! Cute, cute, cute. : ) Love the calendars, too.

  7. Wow, the front wheel on the yellow one is practically nonexistant compared to the red one!

  8. Visions of "Roman Holiday" enter my mind's eyes. Of a chic little Italian scooter (a Vespa) that Audrey Hepburn used to whistle around the streets of Rome. Or of course there is always the "Paparazzo" in Fellini's La Dolce Vita. The "Vespa" so iconic and so much fun to ride!

  9. They almost look like toys on my screen. I just love this shot. I love that the cement is sculpted and symmetrical. Only in Paris.

  10. Bravo Eric for this ingenious shot. Love the colors too.

  11. N'est-que pas que la solitude elle-mème eveille quelque attente fébrile? Voici l'entrée, vide, discrètetement illuminée comme une musée nocturne – la terasse, avec ses torchères ondoyantes par un soir d'Avent étrangement doux – laissant le vestibule et les murmures de voix – la chambre immaculée immaculée et la musique de danse derrière le mur – et le bar à cocktails mondains – le bassin où le nageur s'entrâine, longeur après longeur, il en n'a jamais assez, il doit y mettre de sien – enfin, tournant vers le haut au coin du sombre couloir vient la fille noire et pâle, altière, déterminée et de style épuré, ainsi qu'un moderne avion de chasse suédois.



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  12. ahhh tres cool! i actually own a "fauxspa" (a fake vespa) it is fun to ride around. i got it when gas prices soared.

  13. oooooo, a multilingual blogger spammer!

    I like this photo. If the vespas were the same color (preferably red), they'd look just like shoes :)

  14. Hi, Nice photo.
    By the way, Vespa means "wasp", not "bee".

  15. They look like they want to nest. Lovely, Eric! Love your B&W calendar, too.

    LOL, Tomate!

  16. Lovely photo! That is really an amazing angle you chose, Eric and it is funny that you found these red and yellow vespas side by side. How did you do that?
    I think I'd love to drive one of this original scooter at least once!
    Your B&W calendar is really beautiful too. I have to buy both as things are going two by two today ;) and keep them for me! I love the Lion of Belfort. Super that you chose him and some others that I LOVE too :)

  17. Monica's remark cracks me up! This is a wonderful shot. I love the framing between the curved steps and your point of view.

  18. We noticed a lot more of these last week on our trip to Paris. I was thinking they were new since they had much nicer paint, and beauiful leather seats on them which I don't recall the originals having.

    That being said, the weather was cool and the newer scooters people were driving had these sort of "lap blanket" looking things that went up to the handlebars.....pretty cool idea to keep warm while driving!

    There were somce new, modern looking ones we saw by Vespa as well....


  19. They do look like old friends.

    I saw a woman on a pink scooter with a pink helmet yesterday - reminded me of a certain Shell Sherree...

  20. Just been catching up on weekend's posts.
    Great calendar selection. The colour and black and white have quite different themes. (and my fave pic made it!)

    I remember from my youth that the main rival to Vespa scooters was Lambretta, also originally an Italian company. I also understand that 'lambreta' is a generic name for a scooter in Brazil - Monica?

    Also the idea for the scooter was originally an American one, the designer being influenced by similar vehicles used by the US military during WW2.

    Isn't Wikipedia wonderful?

  21. @Drummond "Isn't Wikipedia wonderful" It is, it is!

    @Eurostyle "We noticed a lot more of these last week on our trip to Paris" Ohhhh yes! Far more. In fact it's due to the town hall anti car policy. People switched to scooters (like I did, almost 20 years ago).

    How did I find these two scooters side by side? Eh eh, that is my secret. Although if you look at tomorrow's photo, you have have a hint!