world nomads travel writing story contest

February 28th, 2020

We met on a party bus traveling from Seoul to the Mudfest out on the murky west coast. After the dirty mirth of the weekend, we exchanged information because I told you I would be coming to Octoberfest someday.

A couple years later, you invited me to meet you in your college town on the week of your vacation. I alighted from the bus and saw your smiling face and looked up at your kind eyes and we cautiously hugged. We had some kolsch in Cologne along the river in those tiny glasses brought around by ladies with circular beer caddies. You told me of your years attending Carnival and the drunken, costumed festivities that ensued. We wandered around with all my bags and guitar hanging off our shoulders. We stopped to have a beer and reminisce about Korea and all the fun times we had there, separately, but of the same spirit. We reached your apartment among the cobblestone streets of Aachen and you gave me your room and slept across the hall. Your hospitality astounded me and I slept peacefully in your bed among your mostly empty bottles of soda water, staring at the pictures of your family and friends.

We went on a hunt for soju and we did find a solo bottle on the shelves! We rode bikes around the hills of Aachen and up to the precipice overlooking the city. You took me out to super cute local bars and we had cheap shots with gummy treats in them and played darts. I sang Amy Winehouse at you while we danced. You won the game and said your prize is to have your bed back. I said I was fine with that.

We laid together all night and neither of us made a motion to take things any further than a sweet cuddle.

Until the morning came, and we found each other aroused and thirsty for the other. Your tender affections and gentle positioning were so lovely to experience.

We took a car to the town where you grew up. “Lost Boy” came on the radio and you enjoyed that you could understand it because it was slow enough. I enjoyed it because I am a lost boy.

Your parents welcomed me with open arms and showed me to the bunk beds in the spare room. Your dad served us some beers as we got acquainted and we chatted with your sister as your parents tried to follow along.

You showed me around the town and took me up to church steeples. We went hiking. It was gorgeous and we spoke of music, my love and your fear of horses, and our romantic histories. We had beers at the restaurant at the top. We crossed streams and fields and farms. You wandered off the path and told me I should set up my hammock among the trees… so I did… and oh, did we swing that red parachute thing.

We hung out with your boyhood friends in the basement of the church you attended growing up and you had me play guitar while you funny boys laughed about your time at summer camp and nights around the fire. They tried to speak English so I would feel included but I felt the love even if they slipped into their native tongue. They spoke of their class pet, a parakeet, or, a budgie. I inwardly marveled at my connection to a budgie, as that is a childhood nickname of mine. We played beer pong and we beat your friends and you were so happy. We made out in your kitchen when we got back to your house and then we went into our separate rooms to retire, much later than you planned.

Your mother’s derndl fit me nicely and you looked adorable in your leiderhosen. You were hung over as we took to the train to Munich, but you perked up when we got to the fest and you took me on the ferris wheel.

We were alone in the house upon our return. You welcomed me down the hall. I’ve never had anyone else make love to me the way you did that night.