Sunday, October 4, 2009

Day Two Hundred-ten, 090926 - West Yellowstone

Day Two Hundred-ten, Date Saturday, September 26, 2009
Time in Saddle: n/a
Distance for the Day: Still in West Yellowstone
Accumulated Trip Distance: n/a
Altitudes: Starting/Ending n/a
Speeds: Avg: n/a
Weather: 25° totally clear, calm, becoming warm and windy in the afternoon
Expenditures: $38

I woke up at 6:20am, with the light of dawn becoming somewhat bright. It was cold out – colder than I’ve experienced on this trip, so far – down to about 20 degrees. Strangely, none of my water or Gatorade was even slushy. I broke down my tent and at 7:10am, started into town to find a mini mart with a bathroom. It was below freezing, but I saw this guy in shorts and sweatshirt running along and *sweating*. I asked him why he wasn’t freezing, and it was because he’d been on a long run. I noticed he had on an Oakland Raiders shirt, but he wasn’t from Oakland – he was just a Raiders fan. We chatted a bit, but I kept it short, as I didn’t want him to freeze up. I then found that mini mart, hit the head, and got some food items ($6). Then, I went to the The Old Town CafĂ© to blog and get a breakfast of pancakes, sausage, hash browns, and hot cocoa at ($14) while waiting for the library to open at 9am. However, the library didn’t open until 10am, but the hour was taken by four local kids from about 8 to 10 years old who I let ride my trike and fielded their questions about my trip and stuff. Two of them donated some change out of their pockets towards my trip – that was cute. They took turns riding my trike, getting a little rambunctious about it, at times, but all in good, earnest, kid-fun. I eventually had to shoo them away when the library opened; a couple of them went inside, too, to play on the computers, and I began to do some serious blog catch-up. The kids came over after a while and we chatted for a while longer, until I gently shooed them away, again and blogged the day away. It being Saturday, the library was only open until 3pm, so I had to hurry. I hurried, but still wasn’t done by 3pm, so rode back over to the Chamber of Commerce, ate the other half of my Subway sandwich, and got to talking with a couple of the dozens of cyclists that had congregated there. A ‘Ride to Old Faithful’ event was going on, and cyclists from all over the nation were there to participate. One of the guys, Scott H, offered to host me when I got down to his town, Rexburg, about 60 miles south of West Yellowstone along my projected route – cool! He and his friend also checked my planned route (on Street Atlas) to and through Boise, ID on my way to Washington, and they thought it was a good route, being the least hilly, with good roads. I love first hand intel! I went inside, finished up my writing, and uploaded the text to the blog site. Then I began working on the pictures, but had only just started before they closed up at about 6:30pm. I knew selecting, processing, and labeling the pictures would take several hours, and I wouldn’t need wi-fi to do that, so I asked some locals if there was any place in town that stayed open, late. There was such a place – the Western Pizza and Bar restaurant, just up the street. I haven’t had pizza in a long time, so I thought that would be great. I found the restaurant, found a small counter on a pillar in the bar with an outlet, ordered up a chicken sandwich and soda, set up my notebook, and began to work. The runner I’d met in the morning was there, and he introduced himself and his wife to me, and we chatted a bit – a lot of his family was there, that night, because it was (somebody’s) anniversary – I forget whose. The guy providing entertainment that night was his great uncle. Man, that guy was amazing! He was over 70 years old, but didn’t look a day over 50, and he sang and played guitar, keyboards, and violin – a real one-man band who could sound like Johnny Cash whenever he wanted. Plus, he only had one-quarter of a lung! I had a great time, eating my food, listening to the music, and selecting, processing, and writing captions for the blog’s pictures. I did that from about 7:30pm to 10pm, and then chatted more with Galen – a very pleasant fellow, who offered to put me up if I needed a place to stay in Seattle, or to at least have lunch with. At about 10:45pm, I excused myself, as I now needed to go back to the free wi-fi at the chamber of commerce to upload the pictures and post the blogs. I got all the way there, before remembering I hadn’t paid for the meal or my sodas – Demitol! I went back, paid up ($18), and then went back to the CoC to finalize my blogs, which I did and finished by 1:30am. It was a lot less cold, this evening, so I did it in relative comfort, this time (whew!) Afterwards, I went back to the same spot I used the previous night, and set up my stealth camp to get a higher-quality night’s sleep. I was even able to use my hammock, and was in bed by 2am.

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