My bike and Curious George - Prize Possessions
Twenty-eight years ago I got off the plane with two suitcases and a bike. Last week that bike needed fixing. As I walked into the bike shop in downtown Amsterdam, I thought the man might declare me crazy; paying a certain sum to have this mess of a bike fixed yet again.
I was surprised to find that this bike has become a collector's item. The bike mechanic was in love, gushing over the fact that I was still taking care of it. I don't look like the typical bike lover and to be honest, I am not. I surprise myself in my ever willingness to put a new chain on and fix it up over and over again.
So what is my attraction to this old bike? It has traveled with me from High School Graduation until now, and on every move, it has been there. As I have embarked on my adventures, I have had only a few things that are always with me: my Christmas ornaments, a beloved picture of my family, my bike and of course and most importantly my husband and children are always by my side through the thick and thin of things.
After picking up my bike, I told my son about the author of Curious George. He fled Paris during WWII with a bike, a change of clothing and the manuscript of Curious George. I asked him if he had to flee what would go with him? He looked at me with curiosity and went off about the man with the yellow hat, then the phone rang, and I got distracted. I will ask him again though. What would you take with? What do you care about? I realize I care about nothing with financial value, only sentimental.
—Allison Ochs Social Worker M.S.W. , Coach, Expat, Mother of three, Wife