Boo-Boo Bear

Andy Clarke

Well, the last few days didn’t turn out quite as we expected.

Today, we rolled out of spot 85 at the Ponderosa Campground in Cody, Wyoming. Apart from the weaker wifi in our area of the park, this was a excellent campground and the staff were incredibly helpful with our RV mechanical problems, even lending me a cellphone to keep in touch with Cruise America.

We head out around 7:30am and crossed Cody on our way to Park RV to have our 12v power converter replaced. Marty offered to drive us to a diner to get breakfast, but instead we ate cereal in the RV while Marty’s co-worker, Arlen, spent the next two hours and a bit fitting the new converter.

Cody, Wyoming
Marty

With no power in the van, I plugged in in Marty’s elk-head lined office — drinking coffee that tasted like it’d been scraped off the roadway and listening to Fat Sally (dog) snore — while I read through the final section of Hardboiled Web Design that I’d completed the night before. Then panic! The entire section, all 25,000 words was gone! In its place was a weeks old version of section one. This must have been a Dropbox error, but my heart was pounding and I needed wifi fast.

Work on the RV finished, I said goodbye to Marty and slipped him a $20 tip to buy better coffee and we drove a mile up the road to the nearest McDonalds to eat something quick and nasty and use their free wifi. The nasty burger was quick but the wifi wasn’t, but after a few minutes it was panic over and every file back in its right place. What a relief!

$70.00 of unleaded in the tank, we were on our way across northern Wyoming towards our next stop, 230 miles away in Bozeman, (via Billings) Montana. The two-hour, 109 mile drive north to Billings was uneventful and a few miles south of Laurel and i90 my $25 AT& cellphone blinked into life for the first time. First one bar, then two, then four bars! Connected at last.

We’d arranged to meet Twitter acquaintance, and Billings resident, Dave Simon for lunch, but as we were running a little later than planned, we met in a City Brew coffee house for a brew and a chat. Dave’s a cool guy. Vanilla lattes in our tanks, we drove a hundred yards across the car park to Walmart to stock up on $90 essentials and replaced the food we’d lost when the refrigerator failed. Then it was another two and a half hours and 144 miles west on i90 towards Bozeman.

The Crazy Mountains came and went, as did the first rain storm of the trip so far, and as the scenery became more like the Montana I had imagined as we past Big Timber and Livingstone, we turned off i90 south for the last nine miles to the KOA campground. A confused looking Jim behind the counter obviously wasn't expecting us. We thought we were arriving late but as it turned out, we were a day early! That’ll teach me not to check the itinerary. We should have stayed another night in Cody! Luckily, Bozeman KOA had a spot for us and we were soon hooked up in a tree-lined park with a view of the snow-capped Montana mountains.

Today may have been a boo-boo, but this unexpected day will give us an extra rest day and a chance to explore Bozeman a little, including maybe checking out Music On Main (thanks to Bozeman geek Joseph Bergantine for the heads-up)

Gleesome Threesome

Route 14, 120, 72, 212, i90,
Miles driven 262
Campground KOA Bozeman
Tune of the day Highway to Hell by AC/DC

Feed the bears

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