I AM SO EXCITED AT HAVING ACTUALLY SPOKEN WITH CLEMENT IN FRANCE I MUST.. BEGIN TO GET SETTLED DOWN.. YOU ALL WILL READ MUCH MORE ABOUT CLEMENT AND PATRICIA AND THEIR SON MERLIN IN THE FUTURE.. AND YOU CAN.. ‘ BET ON THAT ‘ ..
I can NOT begin to become a local newsman.. BUT WANT TO COMMENT FURTHER ABOUT .. Sunday’s earthquake BECAUSE I began to discuss it with you in my SIKKIM post .. posted just yesterday.. I wrote IN RESPONSE TO A LOT OF QUESTIONS FROM YOU.. “Cap.. did you feel it?.. ” .. “Cap.. where were you? .. ” .. “Cap.. are you all right?..” the short answers are.. “I did NOT feel it” .. BECAUSE “I was inside an earthquake (I was riding inside a Calcutta bus). . and “Yes I am fine”..
December the 26th.. 2004.. here in Calcutta.. I FELT THAT MONSTER.. my room and all within my room at the YMCA on Chowringhee began to shake so hard I KNEW.. I KNEW it was ‘ going to be all over for me within a few seconds to come “..
SIKKIM .. THE EARTHQUAKE .. SUNDAY .. SEPTEMBER 18, 2011..
FRONT PAGE HEADLINES IN TODAY’S .. ‘ THE TELEGRAPH ‘ ..
BARE-KNUCKLE BATTLE WITH ROCKS..
Race to reach nine villages still cut off..
FOR NOW FOUR (4) successive days.. the earthquake up North in the India State of Sikkim has been front page and inside page(s) news here in Calcutta.. no doubt elsewhere also.. it is MAJOR NEWS..
Friends.. we are talking MOUNTANS.. we are talking about Sikkim housing the THIRD TALLEST MOUNTAIN IN THE WORLD.. his father is Mount Everest.. just slightly to his North and to his West.. ‘ spitting ‘ distance..
HIS NAME IS .. MOUNT KANCHENJUNGA.. (not unusual here in this part of the world.. the spelling of his name is ALSO SPELLED WITH A ‘G’ in it as in Mount KanGchenjurga) .. I will NOT be surprised IF a third spelling arises !
Rescue helicopters that can normally carry up to 17 passengers can only fly ONE passenger at the altitude some of the villages are located.. 16,500 feet.. and possibly higher.. the one road in and out is totally blocked by gigantic boulders..
In short.. YES.. the earthquake was.. and remains here in India.. a MAJOR NEWS STORY..
I was going to close this writing and begin a follow-on writing.. a writing of more ‘earthy’ items.. Clement and Patricia and Merlin and SIKKIM deserve this writing to be focused upon them only..
AH YES.. THEN I GOT ROLLIN’ ..
YOU all think that I am a world traveler.. but I am sort-of a world traveler. Clement is a REAL world traveler.. Clement is one of those ‘ big guys ‘ we all looked up to in grade school who were .. taa-daa .. in the next grade.. oooooh.. HE IS IN THIRD GRADE.. oooooooh.. c’mon.. you remember those days..
Like Alan Rimberg.. of the New Delhi YMCA.. who I met back in the late 1990 and early 1991 time period.. Clement actually rides motorcycles over here.. WITH his wife and son..
UNFORTUNATELY.. LIKE ALAN RIMBERG.. MY MAN CLEMENT had a not-too-happy altercation while ‘ riding ‘ a motorcycle and Clement is in France recovering..
I have owned and I have ridden five (5) motorcycles.. all BMWs.. two with side cars.. and within the motorcycling fraternity we speak of two types of motorcyclists.. TYPE I.. those motorcyclists who HAVE ‘ gone down ‘ and TYPE II.. those motorcyclists who ARE going to go down.. on several of my five BMWs there are very serious ‘ pucker ‘ marks on their saddles..
This friend ‘ZILLA who you read about in these writings has a name.. his name is Jim.. in the dark of night along side of one of the Autobahns in West Germany.. back around late 1977 I am guessing.. Jim and I had parked our BMWs on the shoulder of the Autobahn to rest awhile.. an enormous German Truck blasted past us so violently that it knocked my BMW R100RS over onto it’s side on the pavement.. we are talking .. I hate to guess here.. two.. three.. more.. I dunno.. hundred pounds of weight.. at that time.. the BMW R100RS was the toast of the world motorcycles..
Jim.. by himself.. got beside my fallen BMW R100RS and.. BY HIMSELF SPORTS FANS.. Jim lifted and Jim tilted my BMW R100RS back into a Vertical Position..
With the roar of the passing trucks and cars I FAIRLY SCREAMED AT THE TOP OF MY LUNGS..
“Jim!! .. I oughtta call you GODZILLA for doing that!!”
And (Thanks so Much Paul Harvey) THAT IS THE REST OF THE STORY about Godzilla or ‘Zilla as I love to call Jim and have done for some thirty five or so years..
If you will notice.. when I wrote above about serious ‘ pucker ‘ marks in the saddles of several of my own BMWs.. I did NOT quip about ‘Zilla wondering about what a pucker mark is and my having to tell ‘Zilla that .. “Zilla.. a pucker mark is ..” .. OH NO.. MY MAN ‘ZILLA KNOWS ALL ABOUT PUCKER MARKS..
Whew.. where does the time go when I sit down and begin to write .. as Richard Petty.. YES THAT Richard Petty.. says.. “Well.. let’s get on with the gettin’ on” .. Richard.. YOU are THE KING.. what a joy to have worked with you KING RICHARD.. and in West Germany.. in 1975.. one of my BMW R25 motorcycles had a Steib Sidecar.. I painted the Steib Sidecar PETTY BLUE.. put a big number 43 onto it and the Petty’s and STP ran an advertizing campaign featuring .. German Car 43.. with me aboard and my wife Beverly in the side car..
Patti 99501 can tell you about her visit to and with Richard Petty and about HIS motorcycle .. an old restored Indian with the elephant ear front fender.. painted definaitely PETTY BLUE..
MUCH MUCH JOY AND LOVE.. Cap..
- CALCUTTA BUS RIDING .. SEP 21/11
- CALCUTTA RAMBLINGS .. SEP 23/11