Across Continents

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Hans and Vicky

November 25th, 2011

Said they’d half expected to follow a trail of miscreants hanging from trees as they’d approached San Francisco. Jokingly of course. I’d reached the city a few days ahead of them and we’d got together for coffee in Fishermans Wharf, close to my hostel. We’d originally met at Myers Flat in northern California. A brief encounter. Neil was Irish but I’d mistaken his accent for German, partner Vicky quick to christen him Hans. It stuck. Despite my copious apologies.

We’d met again a few days later further south at a State Park campground. Cooking dinner together, we’d watched first the camp host attempt to evict a family pitched unlawfully in the hiker-biker site. And then the State Parks Police. Might have shared a little of my robust take on thieves and other miscreants, especially those who believe that the rules don’t apply. Firm believer you should never reward stupidity.

Hans had previously ridden from New Zealand, through China and Central Asia, back to Ireland. We chatted about some of the places we’d both visited. Urumqi. Bishkek. Almaty. Agreeing the world was now a much smaller place. Vicky listened attentively. She was from Cornwall, this her first long-haul tour. Steady riding. Contemplating where they might go next. Perhaps Yosemite National Park, but concerned about closed roads and snowfall.

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No Sniveling

November 21st, 2011

"Double or single shot?" he’d snapped. The woman hadn’t heard him, or at least had realised he was addressing her. He barked his question once more. She paused, then replied "Single". Turning away to face her partner, she’d rolled her eyes in disgust. Her own parting shot as she left a particularly enthusiastic "Do have a wonderful day".

Small coffee shop in Myers Flat, a few miles south of the campground I’d stopped at the previous night. I’d wandered in a little earlier, the service cordial rather than caustic. My eyes drawn to the various signs on the walls. "No Sniveling". "And your whining opinion would be?" "Sarcasm. One of the free services I offer". He wasn’t joking.

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