Monday, July 27, 2009

Stranger than Fiction

My blog seems to have dropped off in the middle of our journey. Before I get back to telling of our adventures, I have to relate a story that has had my mind twisting around such concepts as coincidence, odds, fate, and happenstance.

After a days ride along Lake Superior, we return to the Soo to dine at a fine establishment along the River Walk. A concert is playing in the park nearby and after our meal we wander over to enjoy the rest of the performance. At the conclusion, while making our way to the bikes, a gentleman stops us and asks if we are Americans. We say yes, and he points out our motorcycles. He thought that we looked like bikers, he says. Our license plates are clearly broadcasting the fact we are American. Plus I have my riding jacket on.

“Can you make change?” for American currency, he wants to know. I don’t carry cash, but Deb has some, and she makes change and receives a $20 dollar bill in exchange. I am skeptical and wonder if the man is a scam artist. I tell Deb to check the bill. The man’s story is that he wants to buy a CD from the folks performing. He doesn’t have the right amount and was told if he had an American $10 they would call it even. OK, it sounds legitimate, but scam artists are good at their trade and believable. Deb takes the $20 anyway. We chat with the man for a few minutes about our travels and his then part ways.

Fast forward two days. We have since traveled from the Soo to Flint Michigan. From Flint we once again enter Canada for about a 100 mile ride back to Niagara. Here we line up to cross the border once again. Border crossings take time. There are long lines, and several of them. Thousands of folks cross the border each day. We have encountered showers along the way so we have on our rain gear. However, the sun is now out and we are roasting. To make matters worse, we are waiting in this long line with the heat from our engines and pipes making things nearly intolerable. I’m wondering if I can make it without fainting when I hear Andy speaking with someone.

I don’t pay much attention to Andy speaking with a stranger behind me. He speaks to strangers at the drop of a hat. But I hear him calling my name, so I turn around. He’s pointing at a motorcyclist behind us. I smile kindly at a fellow biker. But what’s this Andy is telling me? It seems this is the fellow from Sault Saint Marie for whom Deb made change! What are the odds that in all the US/Canadian border crossings we should meet up with the man from South Carolina again! And directly behind us in line! Not to mention the numerous unexpected stops for rain gear, gas, and what-not that would alter our schedule.

I ask his name. He says “Bob.” I dig in my saddle bag and hand him one of my homemade business cards I use to promote my blog. He sees that my e-mail address is on the card and tells me he’s taken our picture and will e-mail it to me. On Monday morning, low and behold, there is a photo in my in-box. We exchange a few more e-mails about where we have been. He mentions that next year he plans an East Coast jaunt and wants to know if it’s OK to look us up. Of course! It would be fun to ride a bit with Bob and show off our great state of New Hampshire. Also, if I had paid attention in Sault Saint Marie, and understood he was a fellow motorcyclist, I would not have been so suspicious. I hope Bob does make it this way. Sounds like a good plan to me.

Enjoy Bob’s photo below.

From Great Lakes

1 comment:

mq01 said...

FANTASTIC!!! isnt it funny, we have had to grow so weary of scams and people, the world is so ever changing. yet, out of the blue, a real connection, go figure. so very cool, a great reminder of the good people that most are on two wheels. thanks Pat, very cool.