As I pulled out of the RV park and headed towards my morning espresso office, I racked my brain to try and think of something to write about. Something a little different then the “lifestyle design” soapbox I’ve been standing on lately, something interesting and compelling. And, I was at a loss.
I walked up to the coffeeshop/outpost/Jerry Springer live episode and a gorgeous road racing bicycle with baggage expertly strapped on-top sat outside the door. Remember, I’m in a town where the locals ride bicycles with lawnmower motors attached because they are too lazy to peddle or don’t have a drivers license, so an expensive Italian road-bike is reason to take notice.
Inside the coffeeshop is a tall, Italian man ordering espresso, decked out in road biking gear. Am I in the right place? Or, better yet, is he? We started chatting and he asked me to pull up his blog on my computer. He has been riding and posting articles since San Diego from his iPhone and has no idea what his blog looks like. How fabulous! His face lit up when he saw his images and his journey through the eyes of his audience.
Lucas is from Italy, just outside of Florence and is riding cross-country on the trip of a lifetime. We talked over our espresso- finally- someone else who drinks straight espresso in the morning. Though he did chase his espresso with a cappuccino. So Italian!
I digress. Lucas said he’s a taxi driver in Italy and had planned on returning to work after his journey, but, he said with a shrug, “now, I don’t know.” He mentioned maybe returning to San Francisco and writing a book.
I just love it! Here’s a person who stepped back, looked at his life and found this one thing that he must do. And in doing this one thing, he’s opened up a myriad of opportunities and different perspectives.
We talked a little further and he mentioned his girlfriend who he had planned this adventure with. He said she was unable to accompany him because she was in an accident back in Italy and had passed away. “This trip is in her honor. Its a little sad, but wonderful.” He said this with sad eyes, but a genuine smile. Lucas has a warm smile that kind of lights up his whole face. Refreshing to say the least.
And now the whole picture makes a little more sense. A bittersweet journey on a bike across a foreign country and the shedding of the past in the process. Or, at least a little bit of the past.
So, I guess the coffeeshop/outpost/wild-west saloon (I actually saw a fellow in here the other day wearing a side-arm- with a 12 inch long barrel- yea-that’s real) held a little story for me today. It never ceases to amaze me the people that will cross into our lives during the most mundane or routine events. How many people have you met over coffee or a beer and had your life or your perspective shift- even just a little. I can think of many in my life. And, when we open our eyes a little, it seems that life puts a little lesson in front of us or a living embodiment of a perspective or philosophy we are embracing.
In parting, Lucas said goodbye to everyone in the outpost and said, “I see you next time. Maybe on a Harley then!” And with a big smile, he put his hands on his imaginary Harley handle bars and walked out the door saying, “Ciao!”