So the good news is that as of right now I am in a hotel with internet access in Rapid City, South Dakota. But getting here took some doing. Here’s the blog entry we wrote but had no internet to post at 5am this very morning…

There are few things scarier to contemplate than myself, set loose from the moderating influence of society and inserted into a motor vehicle filled with computer hardware and snacks. But take that deeply uncoordinated caffeine addled Buffalo and mix in Ben – the very living incarnation of profound travel disaster – then you have something that really cause some damage. Me and Ben feel confident that the only way this can end is with my every earthly possession incinerated in a mile high explosion, possibly momentarily after our truck makes its unexpected debut as the lone vechular victor of the Pretty Pricesses Kindergarden League State Red Rover Championship.

I’m sure everyone’s faith in the universe will be reaffirmed to know that Ben still has that same magic. At hour 18 I am staying awake only with the help of caffeine, unwashed unshaven, still wearing the same underwear I had on two days ago, and have already performed inpromptu car repairs and had a run in with the police.

The madness began about hour 6, when (fortified with ice cream and hot turkey to a dangerous overconfidence) we decide to push past Spokane to Missoula and thus unexpectedly violate the laws of man and god. If you are the sort of godless heathen who doesn’t consider The Book of Revelations recreational reading, you may (like me and Ben) be unaware of this key section:

[stuff about seven seals and dragons and crazyness]…Then Jesus looked at the camera and said “if every man woman and child in Montana is not in Missoula for the West Montanta State Fair every year, I am fucking razing all of creation to the ground.”

Luckily for all of us, Montana biblical scholars take their job seriously. And so when we got to Missoula around hour 9 or so, we discovered that there was not a hotel room in the city. Our surprise that there could be no hotel rooms in a whole city was met with the bemused “how could you not know” look reserved for those whose ignorance has doomed them to wander in eternal exile both now and in the hereafter.

But like a programmer who feels in heart that one more make clean; make will put the inscrutable C++ templating error to bed we just kept retrying no matter how little it worked. We headed East on 90, confident that in some little town would have a room for us. Ben’s GPS Blackberry crackled with electrical nerd kung-fu, but it counted for little against the impenetrable aucturus of Montana’s endless fair masses.

Finally, at hour 12.5 we endurance-drove battered and half-blind into Butte – a full 100 miles away from Missoula. At long last Montana ended our misery with its flying triple-suplex finishing move. Every hotel in Butte was completely sold out. And then, exiting the city after abandoning all hope, we saw a sign announcing “Truck parking area – no rest area for 73 miles”. Which was how we ended our first night on the road sleeping upright in a parking lot off the highway populated by semi-trucks.


  1. Josh says:

    All I have to say is wow.

  2. Kenny says:

    “When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro”

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