After two exhausting days of travel, we finally made it home from Bruges last Saturday night. Driving back from the airport, hubby slammed on the brakes after turning on the access road behind our house.
Brad: Jenn, that’s your bike! (pointing to the formerly-adorable Honda Metropolitan in the bushes)
Me: <heavy sigh>
That’s right. Scooter NUMBER THREE got jacked while we were gone. Props to Honda for their anti-theft devices which foiled the scumbag’s attempt to steal my beloved Luigi. Unfortunately, in the process, said scumbag destroyed the ignition and ripped off the locking kickstand, rendering the nine-year-old scooter worthless.
Well, not completely worthless. After taking into account the $250 deductible, Progressive cut us a whopping check for $48.
Ironically, that was the exact cost of the new cargo rack we just picked up for my bicycle. But let me back up a bit.
During our week in Amsterdam — a city where bikes handily outnumber cars — I learned a lot about commuter cycling:
- If you’re going to ride, ride in style. With garish but functional panniers and bling on your handlebars, all designed to bring a smile to your face.
- Bells are cute but also necessary for warning clueless tourists to get off the path.
- Chicks aren’t self-conscious about riding in nice clothes, even skirts. After all, we’re grown-ups. If catching a fleeting glimpse of someone’s knickers is that exciting, then your life is pretty dang sad.
With those lessons in mind, I picked up a few souvenirs to make it easier for me to commute to work back in the States, including:
- The world’s most hideously-fantastic panniers, purchased for 10€ at a street market in Haarlem.
- A bell that reads “Amsterdam – City of Bikes.” Guarantee I’ll think of beer, cheese, and pannenkoeken every time I chime that sucker.
- Summer-appropriate, capri-length tights to avoid indecent exposure (not sure we’re all grown-ups ’round here).
First free morning, we hit our local bike shop, buying that aforementioned cargo rack upon which to tie my panniers. Seems fitting that the $48 settlement check arrived the day before, like a sign from the gods that it’s time to bring a little bit of bike-friendly Amsterdam to Columbus.
In summary, Scooter Thief, I’ve still got a sweet two-wheeled ride, and nothing you do can bring me down after such an inspiring trip. If anything, you’ve hardened my resolve to keep rolling. Although I might be persuaded to make a wee stop, if I happen to catch you.