Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Our date with Sven, the Canadian/Italian

Our paths first crossed at a campsite in Lucia, CA. We weren't prepared to pay the $15 to pitch our tent, so I approached him in search of change for a $20. Our interaction was brief, but there was a connection that can only be felt between fellow spandex clad adventurers.

We all went to bed that night thinking nothing of the chance meeting.

The next morning we appeared to be vibrating at the same frequency, making our breakfasts 25 feet apart, packing up camp, and heading off into the fog filled coastal roads. He said he was headed to the unfortunate town of Fresno later in the day and I encouraged him to put a more positive spin on his journey by changing that "no" to a "yes."

We parted ways and rode off into the abyss.

Fifteen miles later, after a grueling climb up to the sleepy town of Gorda, we found ourselves in the Whale Watcher's Cafe when who other than our friendly neighbor should stroll in. Before we knew it, he and Thomas were conversing in Mandarin over orange slices and nutella as we sipped our overpriced coffees. We posed for this self-timed photo before hitting the road, fully intending to part ways yet again.

lunch break/music break

However, we ended up hitting the road together, and found ourselves moving at the same pace
along the winding roads. Another thirty miles passed and we were going steady.

After four hours together, it felt like time to take it to the next level, you know? Test out the waters and see if this could really go somewhere. So I broke the melting ice by saying, "let's exchange names..." Team bike SLAVE proudly introduced their silly selves and when we got back around to our new friend he said curtly, "I don't have a name."
At first we were happy to call him "no-name" but the allure of his mysterious namelessness wore off at lunchtime. He told us that he was Canadian, but his family lived in Italy and based on his exotic background we decided to name him "Sven." He took to his new name in a matter of minutes (which consisted of us repeatedly calling "Sven" until he would respond).

sea elephant imitation
Together we shared in the thrill of the final descent of the jagged cliffs. And then Sylvie took off her pants.

While biking.

If she were to win a gold medal in something obscure it would be bike stripping.

The hours flew by all too fast. Not too long after admiring Elephant Seals basking in the sun we had arrived at our destination, San Simeon. Sven had many more miles ahead of him, so we said our final goodbyes and watched him pedal off.

As the three of us reminisced about our short-lived romanced with Sven, we pondered his origins, speculating that he must be the son of the Italian mafia,  incognito and on the run. Why else would he not tell us his name? As we joked about awkward goodbyes that come back to haunt, Thomas pulled out his Iphone and gave us his signature "Oh god. Uh oh. Ohhhh No. Oh wait it's okay. Oh no." Signaling that we'd taken a wrong turn, our destination was still three miles down the road.

We slowly made our way back to highway in order to avoid any awkward interactions with Sven. We wouldn't want him to think we were stalking him. So we're biking, biking, and biking and reach the hotel at last, park our bikes outside, walk through the doors. And who do we sitting inside the hotel lobby? No, it's not Oprah, or Vincent. It's Sven. Awkwardddd..... What are the chances?

Until we meet again!

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