Breakdown, Northern France

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Well. I could make this stuff up… but the fact is.. this shit just happens.

As previously mentioned, I met up with the hitchhike ride from Amsterdam to PAris. Cool people, old ride. Like old classic Mercedes minibus ride. I noticed everytime she shifted gears I could see the pavement beneath us. That and I couldnt hear much besides the engine the whole ride.

About 5 hours had passed, and we were enjoying the scenery; their dislike for highways meant that we took as many country roads as possible. Which was slightly odd since the bus was would crawl up those hills of northern france, but no matter… more time to enjoy the scenery.

That is, until, KERPLUNK.

SOMETHING FELL. NO SOMETHING HIT US. NO WE RAN OVER SOMETHING? Quick pull over.
She starts looking over the engine, and I notice she knows that engine like the back of her hand. In a matter of seconds her hands are completely black from the oily engine grime. Her husband scours the two-lane country road.. retracing our very slow steps. EUREKA. ITs a waterpump, and its laying on the side of road. Apparently minus waterpump, engine overheats.

Enter local parts and wood salesman. He lives across the street. Comes out and examines the engine, carrying with him a jar of a zillion spare screws. I stand around useless, trying not to look useless.. thinking of how likely the chance is that we’re stuck. They seem to notice my thoughts and start asking the guy how they can get me to paris. A station.. a train.. one town over… you can make it before the engine overheats… only problem is.. lots of hills. We didnt even make it passed the first hill.

The Scenery

Suddenly she runs to the side of the road and sticks out her thumb. Im dumbfounded.. figure shes hoping to get advice or a mechanic. Instead, when someone finally stops.. she starts yelling for me to get my stuff cause Ive got a ride. Boom.. I thank them quickly and step into the warm car. Kid and wife in the back, nice guy driving Callypso music blasting… I was completely dazed. Just said many thank you’s and mentioned that I had no idea where I was. They were also confused — “Will your friends be ok, stranded back there?” I hope so, I said.. at least.. they have a whole living space in that bus and tons of food.

Another hour goes by and Im wondering where theyre leaving me. Wonder no more, Im dropped off at the beggining of whatever metro… a thousand thank you’s and a big smile… poof.. Im half asleep on the metro and eventually.. at ze local café with Max and Stacy.

So it goes sometimes.. if you’re me. You hitchhike via internet.. it breaks down.. you hitchhike the old way. So it goes.