Jour Deux - France on a roll -- depending on charm - CycleBlaze

June 12, 2011

Jour Deux

Well, I have not turned a pedal yet and I've already had some adventures, or at least some cultural adventures. I arrived in London, bleery eyed after a long flight and long lines at passport control, to find a nice coffee shop at the airport were I ordered a latte...

"Small latte, whole milk" I said, which is how I would order it at home.
"No milk?" she said, perplexed.
"Whole milk."
She looked utterly confused and looked at the barista for help...
Sensing the confusion I said, "Just give me a small latte."
"Do you want sugar?"
"Yes," I said, thinking I would do like at home, taste the latte and determine if I want to add sugar, depending on the quality.
"How many?" Now it was my turn to be perplexed.
"What?"
"How many sugars," she said, as though she was stating the obvious.
"Two" I said, thinking I would get 2 packets and could add them a little at a time if I needed them.
She then turned to the barista, "Regular latte, 2 sugars."
I got a sweet latte.
Sigh
On the bright side, it was still very good.
I handed over my 20 pound note and received what was probably the correct change but who the hell knows. And this in a country I speak the language! ...sort of ;-)

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A little while ago my Bed and Breakfast host Alan knocked on my door asking me what and when I want breakfast. Then we chatted about my plans for tomorrow.
"If it's raining like it did today (as in really hard) I might just take the tube into London,' I said. "If it is even close to nice I may ride to Windsor..."
He proceeded to give me hints on which way to ride saying, "...and if you take that road you will run into the cycle-path and that runs into another cycle-path...".
Except because of the accent I just couldn't NOT. joke, "What a minute, did you say cycle-path or psychopath?" To which we both got a good laugh. Later, as we continued the conversation he said, "....you know, it does sound like psychopath."

A few other things happened, like me being unable to work my adapter for my electronic equipment. Alen helped me out, though I think when I leave they might just say, "What a stupid American!"

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The bizarre moment came at the airport where I was sitting on a bench next to a woman from New Zealand. We struck up a conversation, and not only did she let me use her cell phone to call my bed and breakfast for a lift, but it turns out she has a niece in Vallejo, California, about 20 miles down the road from where I live, and on the ACA route. The world would be a more friendly place if we all remembered that the person across the globe, that we might have a potential conflict with, might just have a relative or friend that is our neighbor. It makes the world a smaller place.

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Despite the fact that I MIGHT not ride tomorrow I'm really excited about starting the bike touring portion of my trip. That will come Tuesday as planned, no matter what the weather.

Having a great time so far!

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