Subject: Connections
Hello Ziners:

Things seem to be quiet here at the moment, so I thought I would try a new subject. Have you ever had a memorable experience after running into someone on a trip? Jan and I have had several, but one that comes immediately to mind is a trip sailing in the Carribean some years ago.

We had charted a cement schooner built by a Welsh miner (but that is a story for another time). In Jost Van Dyke we were sitting in a beach bar, the Sandcastle, sipping Painkillers when a fishing boat captain (who we really did not know) pointed out a couple at the end of the bar and told us they were from Gloucester, Massachusetts. By that point in our trip we were really tired of running into people who knew people that we might know, so we gently declined meeting them, but I did remember what they (well, she) were wearing.

A few weeks later, I was speaking with George, an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) attorney and a good friend, who lived in Gloucester and I told him the story. He told me that he knew them and had heard that they had gone off to the islands on holiday. He asked me to describe the bar, their clothing, etc.

A few weeks later George ran into the couple at a cocktail party. He asked them how the vacation went. They were a little surprised for they did not know that anyone outside of their family and business associates really knew they had taken the vacation to the islands, but they were gracious. George reached into his sportcoat pocket, pulled out a little pad, and told them that he hoped they enjoyed the Sandcastle; he inquired about the Painkillers, and told her that the orange bikini was a big hit. They gasped. How did he know, they asked. He told them that the IRS knows everything. With that he walked off to get another drink, smirking.

Several months later he let them off the hook by telling him that we were there, but he had a lot of fun in the interim.

Tell us your story.

Tom in a very wet Carlisle.