I came out of class today, and discovered my bicycle was stolen! In actuality, it’s not THAT big of a surprise. It seems these days that having a bike stolen is about as notable of an event as say, misplacing keys, or having a cup of coffee. (I’m shamefully exaggerating, but you get the point) Adding to the odds against me, and the drama of this event, my bike was NICE. It was Mark’s Christmas present to me last year . . . a brand name mountain bike, pretty blue, with a nice little basket on the front. Let’s be honest, it was just a matter of time.
For a few minutes, I just sort of looked around in vain in the bicycle parking lot. You know how you come out of Target or wherever and may sort of get lost in the parking lot trying to remember where you parked your car? You may think that a bicycle parking lot would be different. Well, it’s not.
So as I’m sort of looking around realizing it’s really gone, a teacher comes out of the building and helps me. She makes a pretty big deal out of the poor foreign girl who just "lost" her bike. Her enthusiasm draws some interest from passers-by, many of whom take the opportunity to share their own stolen bicycle experiences and advice. My favorite came from the PRESIDENT of the whole college (I didn’t know who he was at the time) who told me that he’d had three bikes stolen on campus, and I’d better get an old and ugly one next time. Wise wise words. Later, the Helpful Teacher said to me, "Yeah, if the president lost three, what hope do you have?"
Helpful Teacher took me to another building where we made a report. I know deep down it’s useless, but in some small way I did feel empowered, and I think Helpful Teacher did too.