Goodbye Bicycle

For the past 12 months I have continuously re-posted an online ad for my beloved bicycle. I can remember that terrible night all too clearly. Walking out of a downtown hotel where we had left a post-concert party, I decided to send Dean off on his bike so I could walk alone to my friend's apartment building to retrieve my own bike where I had locked it up a few days prior - I was particularly moody and Dean was happy to give me the space I needed.
Walking up to the apartment building I had a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach and a second later I saw the broken lock hanging from the bike rack. The moment I realized my bike was gone, I turned around and walked the half-hour trek home. I would be lying if I said I didn't shed a couple of tears on that journey. The next day I made a flyer and began contacting bike shops around town.
I was immediately feeling like maybe I could get it back. Maybe someone would be honest and take the reward, especially since the cycling season was ending and fewer people would be in the market for a new bicycle. After some time though, that hope began to fade and I was feeling awfully stranded without my beloved wheels.
Remember when planking was a thing?

Before the theft, I was still using it regularly for work and to get around town. I had to resort to the bus and it made me antsy - I've never had the patience for bus transit in this town. So I kept posting my 'lost bike' ad, and reposting, and reposting. Then one day, I received an anonymous tip from someone who claimed to have seen it. The person said that a known bike thief had tried to sell it to them but they decided against the purchase since the serial number had been scratched off. So, in an attempt at my own sting operation, I contacted some bike shops, tracked down this person's name and number and called him to say I was shopping for a road bike. (This girl in B.C. actually accomplished what I was setting out to do).
While I tried to be specific about what I was in the market for, without being too specific, the man unfortunately wouldn't let me in to see all the inventory and only showed me one bike at a time. I left empty-handed. Perhaps he had already sold my bike, or maybe he didn't trust me. In any case, it seemed like my investigation was over.
That was in March, by then it had been missing for almost six months, and we were getting back into cycling season so I needed to figure something out. Then, just a few weeks later, I was in North Bay and stopped in to look at bikes in a little shop. Now, a grand ending to this story would have been that I found my old bike in this shop, but that wasn't the case. This particular store sold Specialized but didn't seem to have any that would fit me or were in my price range. But out of curiosity I scoured through the catalog and I saw one that seemed perfect (in fact, it was the 2013 version of the model I previously owned) but it didn't seem to be in stock. The manager took a look and wondered if it might be in the shipment he had just received, and it turned out, yes, he had it. The box was at the very bottom of a stack but he was willing to dig it out and build the bike for me on the spot.

So it's a happy ending, and this bike has treated me well - I've also taken much better care of it. I've learned not to take honesty and trust for granted - people out there will stop at nothing to get what they want. A year later, my 'lost bike' ad is still circulating but I think it's time I retire it. She's not coming back.
Oh well, ride on.

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