My bike was stolen tonight. It’s the second bike since 1996 that I’ve had stolen, which perhaps a fairly lucky record, but this time was different. This time my bike was stolen by the City of Charleston.
I have a lot to process before I share details, but right now there are two points I want to make:
1) How is it that a City is allowed to destroy my bike lock, remove and detain my bike until a fee is paid “for removal and storage” (in cash, mind you, no debit or credit accepted), and NOT CONVEY TO ME ANY INFORMATION? No signs. No posted warning. No information on how to retrieve my missing bike. Like I said, I’ve had a bike stolen before — I know what that feels like. How many people are simply assuming their bike has been stolen?! is what I’m laying awake right now wondering. And fuming.
2) It is important for the City of Charleston to recognize that simply providing a handful of places to park a bike does not imply that other places are illegal to park. As someone who has lived in Charleston fairly freely and happily as a cyclist for nearly 20 years (I do not own a car), I’m drafting my first strongly worded letter. And I’m determined to make a difference. This is unacceptable, Charleston. Unacceptable. Mayor Riley, I demand my $45 back. Oh, and I need a new lock.
More on this after I collect my thoughts.
Bike ride home tonight:
*1 with lights, 1 with lights and helmet, and 1 with no lights and no helmet but what looked like three purses?? She cray.