Monday, November 16, 2009

Sasquatch and Huckleberries...

So we returned unscathed from last weekend's trip to the Great Northwest (make that the Cold Northwest). We spent a few days in Spokane for a Navy conference and then rented a car to go to Coer d'Alene, Idaho; Wallace, Idaho and Missoula, Montana.

Having lived 3 years in sunny San Diego, I really have forgotten that other areas have actual seasons, replete with snow, rain and gale-force winds. Not too fun, but it can be easy to slip into a sun-induced coma down here and lose touch with the real world.

Spokane was ok, nothing great but nothing to write home about (literally). Coer d'Alene was a cute little town with an artsy type downtown. See pic below.

However, our favorite was Wallace. Population 960. More pics to come, but unfortunately Lil M ate the USB to the camera and when we took it to Best Buy to get another, they actually laughed at our ancient camera. I know technology moves fast, but come on, that camera is only a few years old. They told us to check Ebay for parts. Sigh. Time for a new camera apparently.

Wallace was picture-book cute and people were really friendly, but we definitely didn't go in the right season. Both the Bordello Museum and the Silver Mine I wanted to go to were closed for the season.

But I did learn what they mean when people say, "that pass over yonder, it pritner be closed for the season." They're really just saying it's too snowy to take the road through the mountain, so you're F'ed and have to stay where you're at. Sorry sucker.

We did, however, manage to make it through Lookout Pass into Montana, but I know now how the Sasquatch could be a real thing. First, let me say that when I used to teach English as a Second Language, we had this afternoon course about American culture (ie. all the really crap things, like Las Vegas and Lizzie Borden) and one of the topics was Bigfoot.

Because of the ridiculous way the material was written, I could never make it through that lesson without cracking up like a million times. They actually had one sentence in there about miners hiding under a bed in their cabin while a Bigfoot threw rocks at the roof of their cabin (see what I mean?)
Anyway, now seeing how many trees there are and how mountainous and rugged the landscape is, I see how that urban myth has persisted. It really is lonely country up there. Not to say I'm a convert, but it would be nice to actually believe in something :D Loch Ness, here I come.
Anyway, I'll depart with these two funny (at least to me) photos.

Hee, hee, hee. Outside our hotel room in Missoula. Who the heck says "pilfering" let alone writes it on a sign? I don't know, but I'm in love.

Missoula was great, BTW. A very booky college town. Much like Ann Arbor, Michigan where I grew up. We found a wonderful used book mega store, called Hastings that is open until 11 p.m. I bought Nick Hornsby's "A Long Way Down" and a collection of stories by Isable Allende. We had a great lunch (with a surprising amount of veggie options) at the Iron Horse Brew Pub.

Again, with the isolated lonely thing, but Missoula is only 1.5 hours away from Wallace and NOBODY could tell us what to do there, because they had never been there. One 18-year old girl said she had only left Wallace one time. Did I mention this town only has 960 people? Oh, and 11 bars? I guess I know where she's spending her time instead of traveling.

Hee, hee. This sign was outside a Dairy Queen where we had an ice-cream date in Coer d' Alene. Notice the last line. I told Leo he was going to get thrown out. Priceless....

1 comment:

  1. I can't believe you did a post on Coeur d 'Alene, Idaho! Home of my extended family :) Best post ever. I am your #1 fan now. FYI - Coeur d 'Alene means "heart of the lion".