Living in any big city, you will occasionally want to leave your bike outside while you go in and do your errands or buy some stuff or in my case, pay people to electrocute you (haha, physical therapy from a bike accident, taking it with great humor). In Santiago, there are very occasionally bike racks. most of the time they are near useless, because I cannot get my U-lock (the only kind of lock you should be using in Santiago) around the rack, my front tire and my frame all at the same time.
Sometimes, when in a crunch, I will lock only the frame. In Santiago there are not that many bike parts thieves. They usually want the whole thing. It’s not like in NY where you can see a bike stripped of everything until it is nothing more than a frame locked to a post. Usually here people take the bike or leave it be. I should mention though, that I’ve had both a water bottle and a bell stolen off my bike, though so far, not my new Jellibell, which I love. Jingle jingle.
Margaret just got a bike, about which she is awesomely thrilled, and she and Annje and I went on a pedal about town on Saturday, and great fun was had. We all have U-locks, and at one point locked the bikes up and had lunch, keeping a watchful eye on the bikes (they did no tricks). We got into a few discussions about bike locking up techniques, and I was reminded of a series I’ve been working on, which I like to call, “Sh^”:·)t I locked my bike to.” I don’t want to get an R-rating, thus the silly fake swearing.
I give you the four things I have locked my bike up to in recent days that are not bike racks, because this city seldom has any. I’m not above finding an ingenious solution, but it gets crowded sometimes when there are a lot of cyclists. I’m always waiting for someone to yell at me, but I guess I look pretty uninterested in being yelled at. So far, no yelling, though the guy at my ISAPRE practically made me go outside to go get the bike because he didn’t want it to get stolen (that’s the trashcan lockup, mmmm, hygienic!). In three of the four I’ve managed to get the frame and front wheel, whereas in the hanging one, I have not. When you’re locking up to something that has bars close together, sometimes you have to squeeze the brake to get the handlebars in between, like on the tree cages and the hanging one.