Everything was gone. Bebum's bike and trailer with everything he owned. The saddle bag I left behind, with my tools, clothes and my wallet (yes, I kept it there. Keel me) was gone. At least Bebum had his cash on him. Because the last time he slept in Golden Gate Park he had 1500 stolen out of his bag. That small nagging voice in my head last night was not loud enough when it whispered that it may be a good idea to sleep next to your bike in a bum infested city.
What was still there was my recumbent bike. Remembering the embarrassment of falling over in front of all the cute Berkeley Brazilian girls, twice, at least, I feel conflicting emotions of empathy and anger. TAKE MY FUCKING BIKE, I may scream inside my head. I guess the thief was smarter and didn't bother with it. Or tried and fell on his ass.
Bebum and I go into beast mode. But following bike tracks, calling the police, canceling credit cards leads to no trace of our stuff. The police is out of its jurisdiction, tells us to call Park Services and proceeds to get his pig cruiser stuck in the sand. We offer to call Park Services. One aims to please. The bike, the gear, the wallet, the green card, the tools remain gone. What is left is an 80 year old hippy on his morning walk who offers to take us poor saps to his house to regroup.
David and his peace shirted hippy wife Sherry let us take showers, feed us, commiserate about the evils of the world and lend us their interwebs.
We can a carton of pears with them. Their 92 year old mom comes over, full of chutzpah and admiration for the two crazies riding to Brazil on their bikes. She brings us home-made bread and tells her daughter to offer us pickles made with ancient Austrian kosher recipe. We don't feel at home at all.
I remember Craigslist Joe and ask for a little love in the General Community section. Nada. Not until a few days later when it was too late. But we do find a cheap whip (Bebum speak for rig, or bike). In this global megalopolis-sized city we buy it around the corner from David's place. He takes us in his pickup to pick the bike up.
Mission accomplished he drops us back to the beach and... finally, we get to ride. We link up with Mestre and group at Halfmoon Bay campground and thank the supreme being of your choice for a journey well started.