Day 159

I have a little cereal with Jason for breakfast. Paul is long gone, he goes to work at 6 am, and Susan is out the door at 8. Jason is last at 8:30, and I take off about the same time on a quest to overhaul my bike. But first I stop at a donut shop to bolster my breakfast. Then I go to a bicycle/espresso shop called “Bikesenjava”. The guy there won’t let me borrow tools, so I ride to the Sarasota Bike Center. This guy is helpful, so I buy a new chain and put it on, clean my brakes and pulley wheels, and buy some other small parts and accessories. The bike runs great, so I ride to the famous Siesta Beach, look at the broad white shelf of sand, then go back to Bikesenjava for a front tire and a cappacino. The coffee is great, but the tire doesn’t work. I ride back to Paul’s, enjoying the speed of the unloaded bike.

Paul has a hour and a half to throw a dinner together. I try to help by cleaning veggies. When it comes time to eat, we have chikcen, salad, mashed potatoes, steamed veggies, and wine, all top notch.

We run off to Jason’s Boy Scout meeting. They are a rowdy, loud, difficult bunch of boys, and their parents are not much better. Only Paul and Susan seem to stay out of the fray. One of the parents announces that they have a special guest speaker tonight, and the room in mine to deal with.

To my amazement, they’re perfectly quiet. For a while. My message to them is that they can take any idea they may have and make it happen. To get started you just have to decide to do it, then set a date. That gets you to a spot where you can see clearly enough to make all the little steps needed to get there. I forget to repeat this message at the end, but the rest goes well and they ask some good questions.

In the car I get a chance to talk to Paul, and I learn about his recently rekindled passion for the piano. His affair with the Moonlight Sonata reminds me of my own infatuation with the Sonata Pathetique. He also tells me a little about his hitchiking and backpacking days, which of course strikes a chord with me. I confess to him how music, mountains, love, and school once nearly destroyed me by pulling so hard in different directions, and how I’ve settled on pursuing only one course at a time ever since. He’s quiet for a minute after this.

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