forgotten bike lock keys and the stuff memories are made of

Biking with kids

In my endeavor to bike for as much of my daily commute as possible, I’ve run into my share of biking related “oops” moments. The moment when my bike lurched to a halt because this happened. The (many) moment(s) I arrived at work only to realize that I had neglected to bring a bike lock with me. So then this would happen. And, for the first time yesterday, getting my child all loaded up in the bike seat and ready to bike home only to realize that that bike wasn’t going anywhere. I had a lock but no key with which to unlock it. Ooops. This is the stuff childhood memories are made of, right?

Now what? “Now what, mom?”

Fortunately, our small college town has a pretty decent bus system especially given the state of public transport in many small to mid-sized American cities. Being in a college town, we have university buses that are not only clean, punctual (mostly), and bio-diesel fueled (!), but also inexpensive. $1 dollar fare for non-university students and babies ride free :)

So that is how our “ooops” moment turned into an “afternoon adventure” moment with C. enjoying her first US bus ride. A seasoned pro (we used public transport all around Europe this summer), she didn’t blink an eye when we abandoned our bike, loaded the contents of my bike basket unto my shoulders, and walked to the nearest bus stop. I have to admit, it helped that I had friends around when this happened and we could laugh about it togeher. It also helped that they encouraged me to flag down the driver, who kindly stopped a block away from the bus stop, allowing me to get on the bus rather than having to wait 20 minutes for the next one to arrive. Since C. had refused a morning nap and had just spent hours playing at the library, I was anxious to make it home as quickly as possible before the inevitable crash and collape.

Bus ride home Bus ride home
“Bus rides are fun!”

The crash and collapse did come before we could make it through our front door. I walked the block from the bus stop to our house with a napping 20-pound baby, two bike helmets, and two bags of stuff carefully cradled in my arms. And this, dear friend, is why most moms you know have guns of steel.

I like to keep platitudes on hand for exactly these kinds of moments and today’s platitude comes in the form of “you live, you learn.” In this case, my lesson learned was to screw key locks and made sure I have a combo lock with me at all times. Amen.

Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a bike on the other side of town with my name on it.

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About simplybike

{Bikes, a new baby, and the story of us.}
This entry was posted in Baby, Biking with Kids, Daily Commute, Family, Helmet Head, Life in a Small Town, Summer Cycling and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to forgotten bike lock keys and the stuff memories are made of

  1. Christina says:

    Ha ha! You know, I have often had this worry. I put my bike lock key now on my regular key ring, it is there permanently because I am so paranoid about this. Thank goodness you have public transportation to save the day. I have zero :( I’m loving how your pink crate fits on the back of your bicycle. Thinking that might actually work for my dog. Most dog carriers seem too small for her, but those crates are so much roomier. With a nice pillow … hmmmm, something to think about!

    • simplybike says:

      Ha! Christina, that’s awesome! If you do something like that, I’m totally requestion photo documentation and a guest post on “biking with dog.” We tried biking with Indie a while back (after I returned from Germany, where bike trailers hauling dogs was a somewhat common sight) and we used a Craigslist Burley to ride with her. She hated it. We barely made it the mile to our friends house, she clawed through the Burley and barked the whole time. So yeah… we gave up on that idea. But we also didn’t take any time to work on her with it, I think a more consistent/patient approach could yield results. good luck! Keep us posted!


  2. anniebikes says:

    Ah yes. I remember those days of having to make due when you forget something important. It’s good to have a sense of humor.

    I switched to combo locks years ago. We have three, all with the same combination – that way our children and hubby and myself all know the number. This helps when I ride with the kids to school, leave the bike locked to a rack, and hubby retrieves the bike later. The tag team approach works well when everyone knows the bike combination.

  3. microzen says:

    The combo lock only works for as long as you remember the combination ;)

  4. Glad it worked out! I have a rear wheel lock with a key, so I keep my other bike lock key on the same ring – that way at least I can’t randomly lose the second key, which I rarely need to use. And I have a second set on my house key ring. Not 100% foolproof, but I think it’s the best I can do!

  5. Bryna says:

    Glad you kept your cool! And glad (and admittedly surprised) there was a bus for you to take!

  6. Rita says:

    :) you reminded me of my mum! She had a few of these moments with us…

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