Bucket List

Yesterday morning our daughter texted us at around 10:45. She was going to be riding her bike from her place in San Francisco to have lunch at a fresh seafood place in Sausalito, a town just across the Golden Gate Bridge from the city but about 40 miles north and west of where we live on the East Bay. She asked us if we wanted to join her there.

My wife really wanted to go because we hadn’t seen our daughter for a few weeks, so we got in the car and headed to Sausalito. It was shortly after we hit the road, though, when I noticed that our electric car’s battery was down less than 30% and the range left on that charge was only about 88 miles.

When I mentioned this to my wife, she asked if we should call our daughter, cancel meeting her for lunch, and head back home. But not wanting to disappoint either my wife or my daughter, I said let’s go on, figuring I might have just enough juice in the car’s “tank” to get us there and back home again.

One of the challenges of driving an electric vehicle is that there aren’t public charging stations on nearly every corner, like there are gas stations. So, while my wife and daughter were enjoying lunch, I was a bit preoccupied, frantically looking at my iPhone trying to find the locations of nearby EV charging stations, since I was pretty sure, especially if we ran into traffic on the way back, that we wouldn’t have enough of a charge left to make it home.

Fortunately, there was an EV charging station in the parking lot of a Safeway about a mile from the restaurant. Just so you know, although we’ve had our electric car for 13 months, I’ve always charged it at home in our garage; never at a public charging station. I was nervous about what that experience would be like. Would it be as easy to charge my car at a public charging station as it is in my garage? How long would it take, given that it takes about five or six hours to fully charge my car overnight using my JuiceBox garage EV charger?

When I pulled up to the charging unit in the Safeway lot, I got out of my car and plugged the charging hose into my car. It was almost identical to the plug connection in my garage’s charging unit. Easy Peasy. But would we have to sit in the car for five or six hours to charge it?

The answer was no. The ultra high speed charging station could take my car from 16% to 80% in about 40 minutes! And because there was a Starbucks right next to the Safeway, my wife and I went there to kill some time while we waited for the car to charge up. My wife got a pumpkin spice latte and I got a regular coffee and a slice of frosted lemon cake. Yum!

About ten minutes later we headed back to the car and saw that the battery was charged up to 35%, which would get us back home with plenty of juice to spare. So I hit “Stop” on the charging station, unplugged my car, and we drove off. And yes, we made it home with energy to spare.

And now I can check off charging my electric car at a public charging station from my bucket list.

27 thoughts on “Bucket List

    • Fandango September 20, 2022 / 11:29 am

      There will need to be a lot more in order to make electric cars practical.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Maggie September 20, 2022 / 6:46 am

    We live in a very rural area, so no public charging stations here. I have seen some in Asheville but they seemed to be for Tesla only?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. rugby843 September 20, 2022 / 7:34 am

    A good trip all around and…was that really a bucket list item?? We need to talk😂

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Lauren September 20, 2022 / 7:34 am

    There are numerous charging stations where I live. They seem to be popping up more and more. I’m glad you found one close by.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango September 20, 2022 / 12:10 pm

      Hopefully the situation will improve as more people buy electric cars.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Carol anne September 20, 2022 / 8:50 am

    Woohoo! Glad your experience of charging it in a public place was a good one! Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ron. September 20, 2022 / 9:10 am

    I note that the station has a number you have to call. What if you don’t have a functioning phone?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango September 20, 2022 / 9:21 am

      I think you only have to call if you don’t already have an account.

      Like

  6. pensitivity101 September 20, 2022 / 10:26 am

    We have several charging points here now, 2 in the local car park, and three in the main car park in town. The supermarkets in the larger towns have three or four. How do you pay Fandango? Do you use an app on your phone or a card at the machine before you start charging?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango September 20, 2022 / 8:42 pm

      I have an app on my phone, but when I bought the car, I got 36 months of free “fill-ups” (charges) if I use Electrify America charging stations.

      Like

  7. Nope, Not Pam September 20, 2022 / 1:12 pm

    Did it cost a lot? That’s one thing I’ve always wondered about

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango September 20, 2022 / 10:28 pm

      Actually, it cost me nothing. When I bought the car, it came with three years of complimentary charges at all Electrify America charging stations.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Marleen September 20, 2022 / 4:43 pm

    It’s nice to have small pleasures (in this case also very important). I’ve been to a public charging station… in the parking lot of a bank. [I haven’t operated a charging station, though. I wonder if I ever will.] The situating of such a utility by a grocery store and a coffee shop is way better. When we were in the bank parking lot, there was nothing we could have done there besides talk (which we did) or look at our phones (or use our phones as phones) had we not planned ahead by picking up breakfast first. The bank was even closed, which isn’t terribly unusual for banks… not that there was a need for banking that day. It’s great that you were able to locate a nearby opportunity.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Goodmansaara September 20, 2022 / 5:41 pm

    Hello

    Like

  10. Goodmansaara September 20, 2022 / 5:42 pm

    I am New on here and i get love to know more about you and if you don’t mind

    Like

  11. The Sicilian Storyteller September 20, 2022 / 6:08 pm

    Wow! What a story. I’d be intimidated, too, not knowing what to expect. It’s like the first time I ever pumped my own gas at a self-service gas station. Glad you enjoyed your visit with your daughter and got a ‘charge’ our of your day!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. annieasksyou September 21, 2022 / 12:35 pm

    You are a living, blogging crusader/persuader for our climate future. Pls keep these stories coming!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s