“We arrived at this totally amazing store like nothing I’d ever seen before. It was called Harley Davidson. They have outlets in Europe but I had never seen this type of store. He bought me a helmet, rain gear, and leather gloves. Then he had me look at all the motorcycles to see which one I would like. He had selected a Road King for himself but wanted me to get comfortable. The people were so nice and let me try several of them until I landed on a Softail. I was totally hooked. Arrangements were made to pick them up the next morning.
“I’m sorry, this is a really long story, and you probably aren’t interested,” she suggested, as her cheeks began blooming pink.
“You have me hooked now.” Jacob was so enjoying her animated description, watching her every move.
Obviously her family love was strong, and this helped him understand who she was at least in part. The last thing he wanted was for her to stop the story.
“It is so wrong to start a story and then stop before the end. You owe me the whole story, Petra. Plus I think you like the telling. Your Papa sounds like lots of fun.”
“Papa is fun when he is not working and when he is showering me with attention, of course. He likes that his little girl has no fears and tackles everything.” Beaming with pride, she continued.
“As we drove back to his hotel to get ready for the next day, he decided to tell me the rules for our travels. Papa is big on following the rules in all things, even holidays. The rules were no timetables, no grousing about weather whether hot, cold or wet. We would purchase food daily and use a camp stove, and we were going to stay at State Parks in a tent. I was so excited all evening while we got our sleeping bags, a tent he had already purchased, three changes of clothes all ready to go, I hardly slept.
“Have you ever been to Texas, Jacob?” She asked.
“Nope, but I think after this story that may change. You need to tell me what you saw and did on this trip. It is amazing that you looked forward to what many would consider the rough life,” he responded, still interested in hearing the whole story and her animated story method.
“We arrived to pick up the rented Harleys, and Papa had mapped out the whole route he wanted to take. We started out from Dallas to see and experience the Texas Hill Country. Texas has lots of pretty winery estates. They also have the most amazing tasting white peaches. On the way we saw a medieval castle built on a hillside over-look. We had to stop and knock on the door. My family is not the shy type, especially my Papa. Mr. Winters invited us in after my Papa told him he was impressed with his castle home as it reminded him of Europe.”
“He actually answered the door and let you enter? Wow, no wonder you recall this trip.” Jacob was duly impressed, hanging on her every word at this point.
“Mr. Winters was, well is, a very nice man. In fact, Papa still works on security systems for him now and again. He called his Hill Country home, Falkenstein Castle. It was actually based on plans that Mr. Winters had found in his travels of Europe. The castle had been built in Europe so he built a duplicate in Texas. It had turrets, of course, wine cellar, two great rooms, five or six bedrooms that we saw, patios and gardens all around. The view was fantastic. We had so much fun visiting he actually asked us to stay for dinner and for the night. I had to laugh with Papa, later admitting it was a welcome delay from sleeping in the tent.”
The rapped attention from Jacob and his encouraging nods and smiles told her to continue her story. That he was interested in something so simple made her heart beat a bit faster. He had gotten another glass of wine for each of them and indicated she could continue. The other wineries could wait.
“The next morning, after exchanging contact information with Mr. Winters, we continued south to Enchanted Rock. It was listed as a mystical destination for the Comanche Indians and was the site of one of the last big Indian and U.S. cavalry battles of the 1870’s. Papa insisted from his research of the place, that we would only gain the true impact of Enchanted Rock by climbing it.
“Half way up, we met a lady, Bobby, and felt compelled to ask if she was resting or reflecting. After verifying that we were not park authorities, she said she was re-hydrating herself and wanted to know if we’d like a beer. We declined the beer, but it did not stop Papa from launching into his James Bond routine, saying he was a shaken not stirred kind of person. Once on top, we explored all the hidden areas and hidey holes.
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