Across Continents

Ken's Blog

Willkommen

January 11th, 2012

Burton. Germanic restaurant. And there’s sauerkraut

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These boots are made for…

January 10th, 2012

Unlikely to win any awards for his needlework, Ken nevertheless does his best to keep his much-loved boots alive…

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Asking after Astrid

January 10th, 2012

I’d interrupted Carol. She’d mentioned a few cyclists that’d stayed with her. Including an English rider. Astrid. Quickly painting a picture of her, I’d proffered a few distinguishing details. Yes, it was her. Definitely. Explaining I’d corresponded with Astrid but never met her. Not yet at least. She lived perhaps fifty miles from my Somerset cottage.

Shouldn’t have been surprised. Route I was following across the southern States a very logical choice. And a stop at Carol’s bunkhouse equally sensible. Simply forgetting Astrid had chosen to come this way. Also cycling around the world.

[Visit Astrid at www.cyclingfullcircle.com]

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Carol’s place

January 10th, 2012

Ken spends a night at cycling host Carol’s place…

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Carmine collectables

January 10th, 2012

Dusk in Carmine. Lots of antique shops…

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Rocket science

January 9th, 2012

It was a German, explained Doris, who’d got men to the moon. She seemed very proud of this. First generation German-American. Yes, I said, von Braun. He’d surrendered to US Forces at the end of World War Two. Adding I didn’t blame him. The alternative years in a Russian Gulag or put to work for the Soviet military machine. If you’re lucky rewarded with your own Trabant and an extra bowl or two of borscht.

But not a man, I explained, popular back in England. Something to do with dropping V-2 rockets onto London. Not the sort of thing that’d exactly endear you to local residents. Probably the same reason Bomber Harris never got Christmas Cards from Dresden. Funny thing was more people had died building the missiles than had ever been killed on the ground.

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Zee Germans

January 9th, 2012

Ken meets Doris in the East Texan town of Warrenton. Fluent German speaker… Quite a few of them around there, apparently. And some Czechs.

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Steady hand

January 9th, 2012

Two signs caught my eye. "Gun control is a steady hand". And "Never trust a Skinny Cook". And he believed in loyalty. Committed to the hamburger, the single substantive option on the menu. Choice of extras – likes of processed cheese, mayo or mustard – the only permitted variations.

I’d stopped at a cafe at the junction of the 153 and the 77. Supposedly nothing there, according to my map at least. Welcome surprise. Earlier Winchester but the grocery store was closed. Just a Steakhouse with lots of utility workers trucks parked up outside. I’d paused briefly then carried on.

The day hadn’t started well. Adhering to the route shown on the cycling map, I’d sought to enter Bastrop State Park. Four bucks but told the road ahead was closed. "How closed?" I’d asked. "Closed" I’d been firmly told. Was certain I’d be able to get through, but could hardly fein ignorance now if caught. And I knew all about State Parks Police.

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Hamburgers or bust

January 9th, 2012

Ken stumbles across a small cafe. And the menu? Hamburgers… Yep, that’s it. Choice of toppings mind…

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Winchester

January 9th, 2012

Ken makes a brief stop in the East Texan settlement of Winchester.. Closed. But a nice church…

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