I Couldn’t Have Made It as a Pioneer

I would have gone mad and been left in the wilderness. I have almost gone mad riding in the car today. Thirteen hours in the car is not healthy. I kept doing ankle exercises so I wouldn’t get a blood clot.

Day 1 was from home to Wichita then Thursday we went to North Platte, ND then Friday to Rapid City, SD via the Bad Land National Park, and today, Saturday we are in where are we? Oh yes, we are in Billings, Montana. I don’t even know where I have been.

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Let me see if I can recall the highlights. We made reservations a day before so we wouldn’t have some crisis and have to sleep in the car. I wouldn’t be able to do it. I would have to knock on someone’s door and ask to stay over. So far we have stayed in a Hampton Inn, a Residence Inn, and two FREE Holiday Inns, courtesy of Len’s points. He is so proud of these two free nights and a breakfast. Ok, in Rapid City, the Holiday Inn room was huge and fairly nice. Tonight, here in Billings, it is awful but free. So to make up for all of this frugality we are staying two nights in Jackson Hole at the Rusty Parrot Lodge for major big bucks. Major big bucks. I love nice hotels….I was probably a Soiled Dove in a previous life.

Highlights of views out of a car window going 75 miles an hour: Kansas grows a lot of wheat. Nebraska has lots of beautiful IMG_3448.JPG corn growing. Lots. Even a corn maze! South Dakota is either awful looking or beautiiiiiiiful. I loved being in North Platte, Nebraska because I could recapture the troop train experience from the book, IMG_3464.JPG Once Upon a Town. I also loved learning about the Orphan Trains…who knew? I loved the local pit stops as in the bathroom break where I found this sign. Wyoming is really empty. Montana is softer looking.

Now after those over simplifications I think I will put in some photos. The Badlands really are badlands. Like in John Wayne movies, I can totally imagine big shoot-outs and vultures circling. Mount Rushmore made me weepy. he Blackhills smell like heaven….pine perfect. I was stunned at the Crazy Horse monument under construction. We never expected to find it so interesting. Custer State Park takes a loooooong time to get through. And after you see a few buffalo you think you have seen them all. I did like seeing the donkeys sticking their heads in car windows. I think the Little Bighorn Cemetery is exquisite

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Len and I still have different ideas about road trips. He thinks if you have been by it, you have been there. BUT to his credit, he has been remarkably patient and easy going. Well maybe one little stubborn fit but he later admitted I was RIGHT, OMG. A first in maybe 41 years! He said just a little while ago that our next road trip would be to the airport and from there to our destination with a rental car. One hotel and golf for him, and I could buzz around during the day soaking up whatever park I needed to see. I think we are making progress.

Tomorrow Yellowstone and the Great Tetons….settling into Jackson Hole for two whole days. I can’t wait. Oh, and this is important. I have been getting up every day at 6:15 so we can get on the road! Hello, since chemo, I looooove sleeping till 10:00 or later. Debauchery. I am good at it.

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