Unfortunately I have to report that my bike has been stolen AGAIN!
This time however is a far more serious event than just having my lock snipped and someone cycling off with it. Turns out a group of “gentlemen” hopped over our fence and broke into our shed stealing both mine and my housemate’s bikes. As I am sure you can imagine I am fairly annoyed about this. My Specialized Hardrock was only 5 Months old but more importantly and more upsetting is that the bike hasn’t been stolen for use it has probably been stolen to get some quick cash for whatever nefarious and no doubt illegal purposes the thief was involved in. My bike is a thing to be ridden and enjoyed, or to be in my case a primary mode of transportation not to be sold on at a dramatically reduced price to pay off dealers!!!
Speaking to the police officer on Saturday I couldn’t quite get my feelings right as to whether I was furious and should really kick off about it or whether I should just accept it as something that happens. Unfortunately it is something that happens and it is a part of life, especially in a poorer area such as the one I currently live in. But as the Officer said to me it shouldn’t be part of life, you can’t leave it, you can’t not tell the police because otherwise no-one can do anything about it and no-one will get caught meaning the crime levels will rise and get out of control. There is no neighbourhood watch scheme in this part of Leeds and this is sad as it means often the criminals come from inside the estate itself and really shows the break down in community in inner city areas.
Something Bill Wilson of Metro Ministries said when he came to speak in Leeds a few weeks ago rang true with me about this. As a nation we have become so pacified and whittled down about what happens to us, we have become lethargic and accepting of everything. We don’t work together anymore and it only when something so horrible happens like a national disaster that we all remember we can change things for the better if we band together and fight for the same cause once more.
Take these recent budget cuts for example, half a million public sector jobs going including from the Police and prison services, we all sit glumly and whine about it. While our cousins over the channel get a comparatively light hit in the raising of their retirement aged to 62 years old (it’s currently 65 rising to 66 in a few years here in the UK) and they go absolutely, well French on their government! Rioting in the streets and mass strikes and protests. Many feel this is the legacy of the Thatcher years in the UK, the break down of the workers unions and closing of the industries that had the big unions.
So, I will move on, let the police and insurance people handle things. I am fairly convinced my bike will not be seen again, it is very rare to get them back after incidents like this as they can be broken down into bits or transported across the country in hours.
So the process of buying a new bike begins again. I don’t want to not cycle for the whole winter, especially as I am fully kitted out for it other than the stuff that was on my bike. There are also some really good sales on at the moment as 2010 models come to the end of their life expectancy. But I think I will go into that in more depth another day.
UPDATE: I must pay thanks to West Yorkshire Police who have been working very hard on this case, they have found my housemate’s bike and we have retrieved everything else that was taken from the shed. Unfortunately there is still no sign of my bike. This is to be expected because it was the most sellable item in the shed. The search continues!