One is my purple mountain bike that DrBob found for me on ebay several years ago. Both of our houses in OurTown were on a hill, so I didn’t ride it very much – starting a journey in panicked free-fall, and finishing it walking the bike + groceries or whatever up the hill just… never seemed like a very good idea at the time. So DrBob took it up to Utrecht and used it while he was living here without us. Until one day he rode it to a meeting, and on arrival he noticed that the lock was broken, but since he was running late he decided just to stuff it in the middle of the herd and hope no one would steal it.
Someone stole it. Two hours later he came out and it was gone. I can’t imagine why he was surprised by this, but he was.
A half is Ignatz’s mountain bike. We didn’t have time to get him a lock on that first hectic day, so on the second day of school Ig headed out with a lockless bike and DrBob said hey, maybe no one will steal it – clearly he had forgotten the lesson of the purple bike. Anyway, at the end of the school day Ig came out and the bike was gone. It’s only a half because apparently it wasn’t stolen, the school spotted it and took it inside to keep it “safe.” In a locked classroom that Ignatz can’t get to, and I’ve repeatedly told him to ask if he can have the bike back, but he hasn’t yet. So it’s there, we just… don’t have it.
Whatever, it was too small for him anyway. Two is the bike DrBob and Ig bought that same day, September 2nd. We store all our bikes in the front yard, and Ig figured nobody would come into our front yard unless they had legitimate business there, so as long as the bike was there, it didn’t need locking.
That? Turned out to be not so true.
Three is DrBob’s cool Dutch “Opafiets” – “grandpa-bike” – that he really liked. He came home late one evening, figured he’d just change quickly and then go to the gym, so he didn’t lock it. Then he got derailed by email, didn’t make it to the gym, forgot to go out and lock the bike, and in the morning it was gone.
And four is Ignatz’s spiffy replacement bike. I told them not to get a new one, I said a cheap old beater would be less attractive to thieves, but apparently I don’t know anything about this – ahem, I still have the bike I brought up from Germany. So does the Sniglet. Anybody else? Anyone?
Yeah, we got him a really expensive ring-lock, which is the easiest kind to use, but he forgot to lock it just once, and, you know. They know about this house now, they probably check it every night, so you really can’t give them even the slightest chance.
So that’s four and a half bikes, in two and a half months. Welcome to the Netherlands!
Song du jour of the day: Bicycle Race, by Queen. Now that I actually listen to it, this is a really weird song.