Interesting first night in a hostel. On the good side, it was nice to have bathroom, living room, and kitchen to use. I liked meeting, cooking, and eating with other people. But it was an added expense, and the guy in the bunk under me snored like a hippo all night long. I think I prefer camping.
It’s an almost ridiculously short ride to Half Moon Bay. It starts to rain when I arrive, so I duck into a restaurant and eat some breakfast. The rain clears up so I head into town. I find the library closed, so I scope out all the coffeeshops in town, choosing one to hang out and read in. There’s a cute Latino waitress there who keeps flashing me her incredibly sexy smile. She doesn’t make it easy to talk to her though. Every time I approach she disappears. Eventually I leave without saying a word to her.
The sun has come out, small clouds are working their way across the sky. I talk to a bum from the Haight who says the sky here is magical, a neverending drama. There’s a homeless kid here too with a big smile. Hard to understand him, but I think he only talks about sex. The bum asks me if I know how to find the campground. I lie and say yes, then ride several miles in the wrong direction before turning around. No problem though, the day is now gorgeous.
I stop at another coffeeshop, where an Indian guy makes lattes and sells his books of poetry. He doesn’t trust me, I have to prove to him that I paid for my self-serve coffee. Another guy there asks about my trip and gives me a penny with a clover cut out of it, attached to a card with an Irish travel blessing printed on it. It’s a blessing of farewell I sang once a long time ago at the Lama Foundation in New Mexico. I like it, and sing it over and over again now,
May the road rise with you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
And the rain fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow of his hand.
Finally I find the campground and get myself set up in a secluded spot. While I’m making dinner I notice a strange man looking at me, about 10 yards away. He’s gingerly holding a wet tennis ball. I ignore him, but a minute later I look up and he’s still there. This time I keep looking and he approaches me. I don’t know how to describe the conversation we have. I learn that he’s Egyptian, a retired engineer, and interested in me as an odditiy in the campground. He asks me if I know the story of Cain and Able, and is thrilled whenn I say that maybe I’d prefer to be descended from Cain, but it makes him very curious. I never find out why he has a wet tennis ball, and he never learns what sort of traveling I’m doing.