I was riding my bike when a man in his 40s stopped and started to ask me if I had any bike spare parts.
It was a shock.
I thought: ‘What the hell?’
I didn’t know that a person had been standing on my bike for three hours and was asking me questions.
I had no idea.
I was just a little kid, but I had been living in Sydney, so I had a very clear sense of what was going on in the world.
But I wasn’t the only one.
As I was walking past, my bike’s owner, Paul, saw me and stopped to ask if I wanted to buy his bike.
I said yes.
Then I remembered the bike was his.
He said, ‘Can you ride it?’
I said ‘Yes’.
I had seen this man standing on the road before.
He then said, ”Come back later.’
I thought: ”Wow, he’s a motorcyclist, so he must be quite good at that.”
I was then on the phone to the NSW Police and said,”You know what, you should be ashamed of yourself for not asking him to put his bike on the street.”
He replied, ”It’s just an accident, it’s not a crime.”
It was then that I was told about Paul’s bike.
I thought, ”How can I help Paul?”
I didn, and I was contacted by the man who’d given me his bike for free.
Paul told me, ”I was thinking about you and how lucky you are to have had your bike.”
When I went to the man’s house to tell him about the incident, he laughed.
He told me he thought Paul was a bit of a nut.
I think he’s got a bit more sense now than he did then.
Paul says he was shocked to learn the man was his bike’s previous owner, who had been sitting on the side of the road waiting for the wrong person to arrive.
Paul, now 65, had never had any motorcycle problems before.
He’d ridden his bike before in Sydney and was used to people looking for him on the streets.
But after the incident he says he thought, ‘Well, it doesn’t matter what I do now, he’ll be coming back and saying, ‘I gave you my bike, now go and get yourself another bike’.
Paul, who has no criminal history, was able to sell his bike and move on.
But his experience in Sydney helped him to understand the dangers of motorcycling.
The NSW Police said it was ”aware of” the incident.
Topics:law-crime-and-justice,police,cycling,nsw,sydney-2000,royal-columbiaContact Paul McManusMore stories from New South Wales