New Year’s Eve and we are camping on a beach about 40 miles from anywhere. It gets dark we start drinking beer when we spot headlights creeping along the deep sand track that leads to our camp. What?! Who?! Why?!
He is a kinda park ranger whose job is to stop predation of lobster and abalone along a couple of hundred kilometers of coastline. He immediately asks us if we would like some lobsters. Christian is very friendly and clearly delighted to have someone to talk to as he has spent the last two years living in a cabin with only abalones to converse with. He cracks open a bottle of Tequila and pours us big shots. He does not drink himself.
He rants on and on in Spanish and we grin, understanding little. We want him to go away. He goes over to his truck and produce a GUN! He grins and waves it around. We wait for him to put on his wrestling mask before blowing us away. The atmosphere is a little tense.
He wants me to talk to his American buddy over his radio.
“Neil, it is important that you know that the goodness of the Earth is flowing through my veins – over.”
“Er, Happy New Year – over.”
“My body is trembling in unison with the vibrations of the life force – over.”
“Um, did you have a good Christmas? – over”
And so on. Christian, who has put away his gun, makes drinking gestures indicating that his buddy probably drinks too much.
After several shaking of hands and farewells Christian finally leaves. We breathe a big sigh of relief. The poor kid was clearly very lonely but guns change the tone of a conversation.