After searching for what felt like months, I miraculously found my new bike today and I can’t tell you how relieved I am to have found one! Despite cycling being so popular in the Netherlands, finding a second hand store that is still selling bikes is virtually impossible – no kidding! I was surprised by this, but when I thought more about it, it makes sense. It’s almost the autumn, when people are starting school, university or work and so of course they are going to sell out temporarily! But I didn’t think about this when I was aimlessly wondering around The Hague, almost tempted to ask any person I saw on the street where on earth they found their bike 😂
I managed to find mine on Facebook, on a web page called Bikes For Sale in The Hague where people have either posted pictures of their bikes and stated the price, or people have posted a message saying they are interested in a bike for a certain price. I got lucky and looked at a bike which had just been posted, which meant that I got in there first! So when I saw the message that I could come and collect it, I was over the moon.
But suddenly, I realised that I had said yes to this offer without knowing where I would be picking it up from. It turns out it was completely out of my area, twenty minutes by taxi. And I know what everyone is thinking, taxis are expensive! But I had no clue where this guy’s house was and I had to have one today, I couldn’t let another day go by without having one.
On the way there, noticing that it was 7km away on the driver’s sat nav, I did have a moment where I was thinking to myself “what the actual fuck am I doing. I’m going to a random stranger’s house, in the middle of nowhere, to collect a bike that might not even exist. Plus how the fuck am I going to get home” but I still did it anyway. It probably was careless and naïve going on my own but I didn’t have anyone to accompany me and I felt like it was now or never… Holland is a relatively safe place, what’s the worst that could happen?
When I arrived, I was a little worried about the area in which I found myself, but a lovely man with a long beard greeted me and led me inside where his two bikes were. I fell in love with my blue bike immediately! Even though it’s an omafiets which is a “granny’s bike” it was beautiful in my eyes. The only thing I found disconcerting was that I would have to learn how to backpedal, rather than rely on the one handbrake, but after a bit of practice in his front yard and almost running a small child over (luckily I emergency braked!), I felt ready to go!
Today was definitely an experience, but one worth having. Life is so much easier with a bike, and it is way quicker to get around on! I am over the moon ✨