Yesterday, I went to vote by bicycle (as I hope others did as well). My polling place is a short 3.5 mile round trip from home, so it wasn't a big deal to ride over. However, when I arrived, I discovered that there are no bicycle racks anywhere in the vicinity. I was a little shocked (though I really shouldn't have been), because this location also doubles as our county offices. I'd honestly never ridden a bike to these buildings because I normally vote through the mail-in ballot process, and I mail in my car tag renewal. This year though, my absentee ballot didn't arrive, so I decided to just go in person.
The only location I could find to semi-secure my bike was a picnic bench on the back side of the building. "Whelp," I told myself, "I guess this'll have to do." I headed inside to vote, and waited in a very short line (completely different than the last time I physically went to vote, which took several hours). The volunteers at the polling location of course have no knowledge of where the nearest bike rack would be, nor why there isn't one simply put at the front of the building. But, I have to ask what is going on when any of the nearby places I visit never seem to have a bike rack. The Home Depot that is about 3/4 of a mile from home doesn't have a bike rack, the 7-11 also has no bike rack, Starbucks - nope, Checker Auto doesn't have one either, and on and on the list goes. There really aren't many places that close to home for me, but the few I might choose to visit make it incredibly difficult to go by bicycle because of the lack of bike racks.
I'm really starting to feel inspired by S of Simply Bike, and I may have to start my own letter writing campaign in this county to get a few racks installed. It just seems so ludicrous to go to a small shopping center, restaurant, or coffee shop and not have anywhere to lock up a bike. I'm on a rampage now, and perhaps this is all I needed to get me riled up. :o)