“When I arrived in Dallas, Papa picked me up and said we were going shopping for our adventure. On the way to the store we chatted and he asked me if I had ever seen a movie called Easy Rider. When I said I hadn’t, he explained a bit about it being a wonderful trip on motorcycles, seeing the countryside and sleeping under the stars. He had noticed, with the two months he’d already been in Texas, that the stars were amazing, and he wanted to show me. Sounded great to me, especially since we had been riding dirt bikes and smaller motorcycles all over Europe for many years. I guess you could say I’m more of a tomboy.”
“I can promise you certainly don’t look like a tomboy,” Jacob grinned as he took in her face slightly flushed from the outdoors.
He wondered if he could coax a bit of a blush from her, but let it go for the present.
“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.”
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