Rita Rasimaite had to wait 16 months to be reunited with her bicycle that was stolen in Ho Chi Minh City last year, but it only took her four days to lose it to a thief again.
Rasimaite, a Lithuanian national, first lost her bike, which she used in a tour from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, in July 2017, when it was stolen from the hostel she was staying in the southern metropolis.
The mishap was the start of a 16-month drama for the 27-year-old, until she could finally meet the beloved bike again on November 21 this year.
But only four days after the reunion in Ho Chi Minh City, Rasimaite was left speechless knowing that the bike has gone, again.
Lost and found, and lost
On November 25, Rasimaite returned to her hostel on Nguyen Trai Street in District 1 after day of volunteering work, only to realize that her beloved bicycle was stolen.
This is the same place where she lost the bike last year.
“I really don’t know if I should cry or laugh right now,” Rasimaite said after breaking the news to Tuoi Tre News.
According to the Lithuanian tourist, footage from the hostel’s CCTV shows a man breaking into the place at around five in the morning the same day and left with her bike.
Rasimaite said she already sent the footage to police of District 1’s Ben Thanh Ward to report the case.
The stolen bike is a Cannondale quick 5 worth US$500, Rasimaite said in her written report to the police.
The theft took place just a little more than 16 months after Rasimaite had the same bike stolen at the same hostel on July 19, 2017.
The tourist at that time shared her story on her personal Facebook and a number of expat groups on the social networking site with the hope to find her asset back.
The story then drew public attention, with several people offering to give Rasimaite a new bike.
|Rita Rasimaite is seen in a photo taken in Vietnam in 2017, prior to the bike theft in this supplied photo.|
She politely refused all the offers, out of a strong belief that the stolen Cannondale would one day be found.
On July 22 the same year, District 1 police announced that they found the bicycle, but it was a little too late as the Lithuanian just left Vietnam one day earlier.
Rasimaite returned to Vietnam in mid-February this year, believing that she would see her bicycle again.
However, the ‘find-my-bike’ saga turned to a new twist as she was informed that the theft case was being handled by the Ho Chi Minh City People's Court.
The bicycle would only be returned to its owner once the trial ended. As she could not stay in Vietnam until then, Rasimaite authorized one of her friends to receive the bike later that year.
|Rita Rasimaite in Vietnam in February 2018. Photo: Dong Nguyen/ Tuoi Tre News|
On November 21, she excitedly shared with Tuoi Tre News she was back in Vietnam and was finally reunited with her bicycle, before it was stolen again on November 25.
Now that the bike was gone again, the Lithuanian woman still keeps her optimism and does not blame anyone.
“It depends on our attitude towards things, if we think positive, everything will get positive,” she said.
In her police report, Rasimaite wrote that she did not want to seek any charges against the owner of the hostel if the bicycle could not be found.
When we believe in miracle
|Rita Rasimaite and her friend are seen in a photo she posted on Facebook to announce the reunion with her bike on November 21, 2018.|
“When you believe in miracles - it happens,” that’s what Rita Rasimaite wrote on her Facebook post announcing she was finally reunited with her lost bike on November 21, 2018.
“Many people told me to forget about it as many bicycles and motorbikes get stolen and it’s impossible to trace it back. There was even some very kind and generous people who offered to gift me with a new bicycle, but I gently refused it and kept believing thatmy bike will come back to me. And shortly after this story by some lucky coincidence became so public that Saigon police worked hard on investigating the case and caught the thief,” she added.
The tourist from Lithuania also delivered a “huge THANK YOU” to everyone who shared and believed that her bicycle could be found, as well as to all her friends and Ho Chi Minh police, without whom she “wouldn’t be riding my legendary bike again! Vietnam - I love you!” she expressed.