Coming soon?

ab6.jpgLittle boys waiting with a crowd for a food pantry to open were playing around the happy-looking new bikeshare bikes locked in the station. As I unlocked a bike for my membership-allotted daily free hour (with them watching and asking about everything I did), my heart sank, as it has been doing more and more during these two weeks since the new bikeshare system launched, when I saw the father walking over to me. I knew I was about to get into a conversation (as has been happening every time I ride one of the bikes) with yet another person for whom access to a bike could change lives. I knew he would ask about a cash option (not for the kids, but for him). I knew that it had been promised, and that equity was supposedly marching order #1 in this city with this new program, but two weeks in and it still doesn’t exist as an option. I knew his face would drop when I told him it was “coming soon,” which is code for “you’re not a priority.” I also knew for sure that writing a book about a city facing the pain and pride of change (as I did last year) did not mean I was done with these issues, but, rather, just beginning.

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