I’ve always known that bikes left at Vauxhall station die horrible and lingering deaths, but up to now I’ve comforted myself with the belief that the bikes that suffered were the ones that were already abandoned, ones that had been left locked up there by their heartless owners for a long time. My bike, which mostly never stays out at night and is usually tucked up in our front garden in our nice middle-class enclave well before dark, would be okay. This morning when I locked up my bike at 7:30 it had the bike rack all to itself. This evening, when I went to fetch it almost 12 hours later it had a friend with it – another regular commuter bike, and yes I do recognise some of them although I haven’t given them names yet – but its friend was already missing its front wheel. Gah. This does at least justify my belt and braces policy of having both a bike that’s too rubbish to steal while also locking it up to within an inch of its life but I find it worrying. And if I’m worried, how do you think my bike feels? Not only did it have to watch its friend get dismembered, but now it knows it’s too crap for even the local wildlife to want it or its constituent parts.
* Or possibly not. But humour me, it’s been a long week.