In the last post you read about a mad attempt to get to South Carolina. What I didn't tell you about was the way those days were spent. I'm here to fix that.
We left East Glacier Park around 9am. To give you some perspective on the sheer size of Montana- we traveled just over 6 hours (including stops for fuel), and we were STILL in Montana! Our first stop was a Harvest Host in Billings, MT called, Canyon Creek Brewery. They had a live band and a car show happening. It was a great way to end a long day's travel.
The next day would lead to a bit more "excitement" all because I wanted ramen from Bokoju Ramen. Let me begin by saying that this is a team effort here at "Our Someday", and when things go sideways for one, so it goes for the other. We were on our way to Rapid City RV Park in -as you would assume- Rapid City, SD, we experienced a warning light on the dash and immediately pulled over to diagnose the problem. As it turns out it was just the 'def' was low. No worries, we could fix that when we stopped for the night. And all was right with the world again, but wait! There's more!
Upon our arrival in Rapid City, we had time to kill before Bokoju opened. So we found a parking spot, walked down to an Irish pub for a "victory beer" and once there we asked the bartender about where we were parked and, as it turns out, the chances of us getting towed out were wildly high. So this is where I give you the abbriged version of our latest debacle. Instead of waiting to see if we got towed, we opted to move to the street, instead of trying the hotel parking lot across the street. And against our better judgement we attemped a quick back in manuver while the light was red. Between the sun, the quick light, and quite simply poor planning we ended up running over a parking meter. This is where you can either laugh, or roll your eyes, or both. So after about 30 minutes "chatting" with the Traffic Dept-aka the meter readers, we had enough of Rapid City.
I told Mike, "Hey, it's been a long day. Let's just go to the campground, and park up for the night". At which point he said, "There's no way we are going to go through all that crap and leave here without your ramen"! This is where I tell you WHY I wanted that particular ramen. We watch Food Network alot and one of our favorite chefs is, Justin Warner. Him and his wife have a restaurant in Rapid City, and I have had that on my list of places to stop for quite awhile.
With permission from the hotel to park in their lot, we walked down to Bokoju for a take out of Ramen and the hopes of meeting Justin Warner. Bad news- Justin wasn't there. Good news-He was around the corner at a wine bar that him and his wife recently opened. So off we went. As we walked in there he was at the bar training his new staff member. We sat at the bar and proceeded to spend the next hour or so visiting with this celebrity chef. And I'm happy to report, he is just as real as you would hope. What you see on TV is what you get in person. Just a genuinely kind, funny and knowlegeable human being. The wine was great and the Ramen was to die for!
In any given day on the road things can go from good to bad and back again in mere moments. Each moment a memory worth writing about, as well as photographing. Big shout out to Justin Warner for keeping it real!
The next day was another 6 hour long day. We landed at another Harvest Host. This one is called Comstock Lodge and Copper Bison. It's located in Sargent, Nebraska. We enjoyed a wine and bouborn tasting and, for supper our hosts made Bison Pizza. All of which were great, but what was even better was the wildlife. Buffalo and Elk are raised for hunting excursions. Before handing down judgements, look at the website and you will see how humanely they do this. In any case it was beautiful to see. They even have white buffalo, but the picture we took was too blurry to share. But the elk were happy to pose!
When we left the next day, we knew it was going to be another 6-7 hour day, but there was light at the end of the tunnel. When I say 'light', what I really mean is smoke. Yup, it was time for another stay in Excelsior Springs, MO at our favorite BBQ joint....Wabash BBQ. As always the food was fantastic and after filling up with food there, we walked to the local brewery; Dubious Claims. We watched a college football game and listened to a crazy lady laugh and screech for as long as we could and finally couldn't take anymore. So it was back to Wabash and a visit with the bartender there. It was another happy stop in Excelsior Springs.
It was here that we made the decision not to go to South Carolina. The decision wasn't made lightly. We were exhausted and things at the base were not coming together as plannned. It was time to throw in the towel. And so, the next day we headed for sanctuary in Piedmont, but not before driving another 6.5 hours.
So that my friends, is what 1,700 miles, 5 days, 4 stops and 1 parking meter looks like. If you haven't read about the stop at Rick and Barb's you can find it here. I'm hoping to have the next post sooner rather than later. It includes an extended visit to Ellaville and 6 other stops before Biloxi.
Until then....Be Well, Be Happy and Safe Travels