Greetings from Butte, Montana and the Copper King Conference Centre and Resort!
Hours driven: 16 hours
Kms travelled (door to door): 1197.2
Money spent: $215.43
Well, we didn’t get an early start because we wanted to catch up on some sleep. After some concern about the border crossings into the US on the Canadian long weekend, we were happy to find the delay was only about 20 minutes. Emile – accustomed to the large bridges for border crossing in Ontario – was disappointed to find that the Peace Arch was as small as it is it. He thought the Peace Arch referred to a glorious bridge stretching across a river (like Niagara River).
Cell Phones are now switched off and we began probably the longest period either of us has spent disconnected in over a year. Can’t look up hotels, maps, or settle arguments without the internet.
I always find adjusting to the road signs in the US is such a problem. In Canada, you know if the road sign says “Regina 193”, you’re going to be there in 2 hours give or take. In the US, you see “Missoula 193”, you’ve got another 3+ hours. It makes the next distance sign feel like you’ve accomplished very little.
We stopped in . . . um. . . some city just outside Seattle to get some groceries and bought ourselves some American Only goods. This included Keebler Cinnabon Cookies, Triple Double Oreos (three wafers, 1 vanilla icing and 1 chocolate icing), Reduced Fat Cheeze Its (you know, we have a strict diet), and a large Mexican Beer (just for the thrill of purchasing alcohol in a grocery store).
After that, I typed e-mails into Word, and we drove across Washington, into Idaho (Emile wonders why they got that little panhandle) with plans to stop in Coeur D’Alene. We weren’t tired in there, so decided to keep pushing on, not knowing what was awaiting us.
Arrogance again led us to believe that we’d easily find a hotel room in Montana. We started stopped in St. Regis, and by the time we asked at the third hotel in Missoula, we thought something might be up. I asked the girl what was going on. She looked at me like the ignorant Canadian I am and said “It’s Friday night. It’s Montana. It’s summer.” Well. Hmmm. Well that pulls me down a couple of pegs. Its midnight by now, but what to do? Park with the Truckers, and snuggle in the fit? Or keep driving. Emilie cracked open a diet cola, and some American Only Chili Fritos and said “I’m good to go.”
We headed towards Butte, while I slept for the next stage of driving if necessary. When we got to Butte, we asked at 3 hotels before someone said “Copper King” might have rooms.
The clerk wasn’t the most attractive man – drinking a 7-11 Super Big Gulp at 2 in the morning might give you a clue about why – but I almost leapt across the desk into his arms when he told me there was a room.
August 3rd, 2012 Extra-Ordinary: Staying at the former “it” spot from 1985. But who cares? It was a clean, well-appointed, and friendly with soft flat surfaces to sleep.