Saturday, June 28, 2008

June 25th: Philadelphia, Haddington Bike Shop

On Wednesday morning Ward and I got up pretty early after sleeping in the bus and headed over the Neighborhood Bike Works Haddington Shop. Again, we had been to this location the previous year, so we had an idea of what to expect. Mustafa, who works for NBW, opened the shop on his day off, since they were typically only open on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. What an awesome dude!
Before getting off the bus, I noticed that Ward had not taken off his sandals and I expressed my concern for his toes, but he said he was much more comfortable, and he would take the risk of dropping a tool or a bike on his foot for not wearing shoes while hanging out on an unshaded sidewalk for the afternoon. Within a few hours of hanging out in the heat, I found myself being desperately jealous for some sandals myself, even trying to find a cheap pair at the convenient store next door. No luck. I would have to wait until the tomorrow and hit up the One in Five on the same block where Ryan and Chance live.
We set up as usual, and had a small crowd throughout the morning, which was great because it gave me the opportunity to strip some bikes for parts in the bus that we had been toting around while Ward worked on repairs. Ward spent most of the afternoon with DeShawn, or "DeDe", who hung out the entire time, talked non-stop for four hours, and had about 9 bikes that he needed fixed.
The funny thing is that this is a phenomenon at all our events. There is ALWAYS one kid who has a lot of really messed up bikes, like you fix one and they all of a sudden have two more out of NO WHERE, and then a couple more just seem to appear. Where are they stashing all these bikes? And it also seems like they never went far to get the bikes, like they are always just right around the corner, or their pulling them out of their pockets or something. Its a mystery to me. Chance called the "i got a million busted bikes" kid out the day before, yelling, "Damn, Omar, how many bikes you got?!?!?", to which there is also never an explanation more than a shrug of the shoulders as to why one kid has sooo many bikes. Pretty funny.
A guy came by and get a tune-up on a really nice bike and he gave us 30 bucks, which ruled because we very rarely get donations on the road.
A guy in a car at the stop light at the intersection where we were set up asked Ward, while I was standing next to him, "Where did you find a girl that can work on bikes?".
A guy showed up in need of a new inner tube, and then told Ward aggressively that it was Ward's problem that his bike was messed up, which just confused us all. Ward tried to question the guy about it, saying "How can it be my problem? I don't have to ride this bike", to which the guy didn't reply, he just keep talking and talking. Then Ward asked him if he was related to DeShawn, and the guy actually tuned in, saying "Why? Cause he talks a lot?" .
A guy showed up and interrogated Alex, the camera dude who came on tour with us to video tape the events, as to whether or not we really thought we were doing any good in helping people, as to which Alex had nothing to say, because he was just trying to video tape. It wasn't funny because it seemed like the situation was getting tense, but it was almost entertaining that the guy was so relentless in preaching to the wrong person.
We packed up by 3 and headed back to West Philly to the house to enjoy the afternoon on the roof, relaxing, watching the happenings in the park and retiring early for some much needed rest.

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