Thursday 2 September 2010

Day 6 – Minnesotans Ain’t Afraid Of No Coast

Moving to a landlocked state has made me worry about how much I’m gonna miss having easy access to the ocean, so I’m glad to say that today we’ve made it to the west coast of America! Of course it took a long slog of driving to get here. Unfortunately on a trip as ambitious as this one you have to accept that there will be days that mostly consist of being in the car and not much else.

The clouds were low over Montana this morning and it gave the first part of the drive an eerie feel. We passed an Allied International truck on our way out of the state and it crossed my mind that perhaps our shipped boxes were in there and the driver had just gotten lost – it would explain why they’re taking so long to arrive!
As we crossed into Idaho (state number six), not only did the landscape change, but the sun instantly came out. Trees, trees everywhere! Another good looking state!
Because today was mostly just a driving day we planned to split things up with a stop in the historic town of Wallace, ID. Many years ago Dante’s Peak was filmed there, but other than that this is the town that time forgot. The freeway goes over the town in a way that would have pissed off even the most laidback homeowner; it’s an ugly backdrop that is a stark reminder of how fast roads have ruined a lot of small town America.
While there we checked out the various antique stores where Joe & I argued over a cool painting of a seagull - another great purchase that passed us by - then we headed into the most bizarre museum of our trip: the Oasis Bordello. Due to the quiet nature of the town we were the only patrons and got a personal guided tour around this ex-brothel.
The Oasis Bordello was originally run by the infamous Ginger. Once a prostitute herself, she later decided the career of a madam was much more lucrative with less work involved. The bordello was still open right up until 1988 and the way it looks today is exactly how it was left the day the girls ran out of town...right down to the cigarette butts in the ashtray. Despite the subject matter it was a quirky and interesting visit. Sadly they didn’t allow pictures inside, which is a shame because I’d love to show everyone the crazy 80’s décor and how cramped these girls lived despite sometimes being able to pull in $100,000 a year.
The rest of our day was spent travelling through state number seven: Washington. Our first impression was not a good one. Having been through so many beautiful landscapes over the last week, moving into flat, dry yellow fields was not to our liking; especially when we had a five hour drive to get through. Luckily once we got closer to Seattle we got back to the stunning sights we’d become accustomed to with mountains looming in the distance.

One thing we certainly have not been accustomed to of late is traffic! Damn, we’d forgotten how annoying that can be. Days with freedom on the roads has spoilt us and now we’re back in civilisation it’s going to take time to adjust…Do I miss the open plains already? Well, maybe I would have if our hotel hadn’t upgraded us to a Jacuzzi suite looking out on the Space Needle! Maybe metro life isn’t going to be that bad after all…
So, until tomorrow…

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