When it came time for breakfast, we went to the buffet on the KOA premises. We’d read about the pancake breakfast the night before, and both Ox and Little Bird seemed fired up about pancakes. KOA had a full buffet for something like $7, but pancakes for something like $3. Ox got the pancakes. Little Bird, who seemed to be pretty much out of cash, said she wasn’t hungry. I offered to spring for her pancakes. She accepted and was very thankful.
After we got packed up, we headed on into town to check out the campus. My animal-monikered friends were interested in being somewhere that there would be young people. Campus was pretty dead, though, as school was apparently not yet in session. I dropped them off downtown so that I could go to a FedEx (formerly known as Kinko’s) to print a form to cancel the insurance on my house that burned down in September. For reasons that I never completely understood, I was supposed to keep paying the policy until the claim was settled. There were a couple things that I thought they should still pay, but I was not optimistic that I’d see anything more from them, so I decided not to give them another $75.
At the Kinko’s I printed the form, signed it, scanned it, and emailed it to the insurance company. I also mailed a wedding gift to my cousin for his upcoming nuptials on October 1. My work done, I went to Walden to wait for my passengers to come back. While I waited, a nice man came over and asked some questions about me and Walden. I told him about the house burning down and that I was now traveling. As he was leaving, he suggested that if I needed some “chronic, to take the edge off” that I should let him know. I wasn’t quite sure just what a “chronic” was, so I thanked him, and he was on his way. After he left, I checked urban dictionary to see just what “chronic” is. It turns out that it’s marijuana. Apparently this guy thought that because I live in a VW camper, I wanted marijuana, or, at least, I would know what it was.
My passengers returned and, for some reason, seemed to be very disappointed that they didn’t get to meet the chronic man. Before leaving town, we tried to get a snack at some brewery that the Google found, but we couldn’t find it. We did, however, find an REI. There I tried to buy a watch, as some friend I’ve visited along the way said that I should get a fancy watch. I often wish that I had a timepiece when I wake up between 4:00 and 6:00 and the cell phone is mounted on the dash. I looked and looked at the watches, but none called out.
Having given up on snacks and watches, we headed out of town. When we stopped for gas and ice Ox noticed that Walden’s tire looked very low. We’d seen a tire place nearby. If I lived in a house, I likely would have just put some air in, but this was Montana. It’s a long way between places that pass as civilization in Montana. We stopped at the tire place to fix it. They said that the leak was around the bead and that they wired-brushed the edge of the rim to fix it. Twenty dollars later, at 3PM, we were ready to leave Missoula. Off like a herd of turtles, as my mother would say.
It was a long way to Glacier. We accidentally took a scenic route. The other route may have let us stay in a forest, but we didn’t see any likely places to tuck in for the night. Instead, we made it all the way to Glacier National Park! Sadly, the ranger at the gate said that all the campgrounds were already booked up. We headed back out of the park to Glacier Campground (no relation to the park). It was not a bad place, and it was less than $25. (Ed. Note: It was actually $25.25.)