It was a bit chilly in Walden when I woke up in front of the Lucky Bucket Brewery and Distillery. It was not really cold, not like when I woke up to find six inches of snow on the ground, but cold chilly. What I really wanted was to be able to turn on my furnace, but in spite of having just reinstalled some parts I had sent out for repair, it is dead. I checked the fuses. I hope it is just that single wire somewhere is disconnected. Fortunately, it was not that cold. Better still, I knew exactly where to find the warm shirt that I wanted, and it was within arm’s reach.
There is a whole bunch of nothing between Omaha, Nebraska and Logan Utah. Google suggested that I could make the trip in about 15 hours. I planned to make it to Cheyenne, where I had been last year for field days by nightfall, and make it to Logan by Sunday night, a couple of days ahead of my original schedule.
When I was on the road full time last year, I hated driving more than about four hours a day. I am not sure what my source of stress was. If I were to get in my trusty Honda, a twelve hour stint would not be that big a deal, but 350 mile trip from Birmingham to New Orleans really stressed me out. (Here is a post from that trip.) Now, an eight hour day in Walden is no problem. I have been doing stuff like meditating that has made me much more at peace. Or maybe it is that Walden is running much better now (after spending a bunch of money in Berkeley, CA last October).
I had chicken fried steak at a little truck stop and headed to the car. As I was leaving I noticed a guy wearing a real live cowboy hat getting into a big truck. I was cowboy country. Tonight I would be sleeping in the same town where I once saw the Daddy of ‘em All.
Somewhere in Nebraska I got a call from my mother, who has taken to compulsively checking my whereabouts on the Where’s Walden page. She noticed that I was going to be close to Ft. Collins, and she wanted to know whether I was going to New Belgium Brewery, perhaps the only of my favorite breweries that she can name. She once brought me a case of La Folie when she visited Ft. Collins in a vehicle that contained beds.
I am doing an on line seminar and this weekend’s homework is to “Do something that makes YOU happy.” This assignment is a challenge for two reasons. First, at some level I am always doing stuff that makes me happy, since I have relatively few constraints on what it is I do. Second, though, perhaps because my life has so few constraints, it is difficult to know what to do to make myself happy. I cannot, say, take a day off of work. Going to Ft. Collins, though, seemed like the perfect treat, and taking a day off of driving seemed like a pretty lovely luxury.
I pulled over at a Nebraska rest stop and checked the geography. It was less than an hour out of the way. Taking a whole day to hang out in Ft. Collins would still allow me to be in Logan a day sooner than I had planned. And I did need to stock up on alcoholic comestibles before entering Utah.
I had not showered since Knoxville. It might be chilly and I was not going to get the furnace fixed before nightfall. The notion of staying in a motel had some appeal. Part of me wanted to spend all of this trip in Walden as some sort of badge of honor, but the thought of having a shower was really appealing, and sleeping inside with WIFI could be nice. In retrospect, I might just as well have just showered at truck stop and it was not really that cold.
After spending much too long finding a motel, I paid sixty bucks for a Motel 6 on the edge of town. I got a shower, which was as good as I had anticipated. After putting on clean clothes for the first time since leaving Knoxville, I asked Google where the closest brewery was. It was Funkwerks, one of my favorites; their flagship beer is a Saison, or French farmhouse ale, which is one of my favorite styles.
At Funkwerks I got a flight of six of their beers and a cheese plate. I was about to leave, but a big crowd came in, and they fun to watch. For the rest of the night I nursed a cherry Saison, the only beer not included in the flight. Next thing I knew, it was last call. I bought a couple big bottles of beer and a couple of glasses to replace the ones that were lost or broken since my last visit. I am pretty sure that one day I will live somewhere bigger than Walden and will be happy to have some glasses.
And in spite of closing down yet another bar, it was an early night. The place closed at nine.