Monday, February 6, 2012

The Dirty Yeti Beach Party Days 7 and 8.

Jack, a very shrewd man, thought with narrowed eyes for a moment.

“It could be a mechanical thing. There are great mechanical wonders in the world today.”

Sir Kent spoke up with a raised eyebrow. “T’would be a wonder that could travel the way people talk about it.”

“I’ve seen it,” Tanaka said, “It carries them and all of their gear through snow and over mountains. It has a V6.”

“A what?” I asked.

“A heart that beats so strong that the beast could drag anything anywhere.”

“That does sound like a wonder.” Jack spoke softly as the sun set outside the window.

We left Aberdeen for a long, flat drive across South Dakota. The plains whizzed by while the van hummed gently over a cracked state road. In the afternoon, near the border of North Dakota, we saw an enormous, hand-wrought metal sign advertising “The Enchanted Highway”. We jammed the brakes, jerked the wheel, and took a little side trip.

The Enchanted Highway is one citizen’s attempt to help his small, agricultural town. Gary Greff built huge metal sculptures to help drive Interstate traffic through the area of Regent ND. These sculptures are really big.

The Montana border came with a new landscape. Soon mountains sprouted on the horizon. Canyons and grasslands and cliff side roads filled our windows, growing ever larger until we pulled into Butte. We got ourselves a nice room in a hotel shadowed by snowy peaks. After some fitness room torture, we settled in for some computer work and dinner.

The next morning we took to the roads again, following the twisting highway around the mountains. Afternoon flew by, and the sun set on us as we hit the Idaho panhandle. Through the dark and over snowy Interstates, we passed quickly into Washington. Spokane is right near the border, and we were pulling into the town before we knew it.

Neato Burrito sits in a very clean and highly commercial looking downtown district. The Baby Bar is a tiny room in the back of Neato Burrito. After checking in, we explored the neighborhood. There were plenty of bars and restaurants featuring live music, though mostly cover bands. The streets were clean and lit and bustling. When we made our way back to the venue, it had packed in a bit.

Silver Treason, the other band on the bill, arrived and was loading in. We all shook hands and helloed a little before getting right down to business. There was a nice write up for us in the local alt paper, so a few people had come in curiosity. Many people came to see Silver Treason also. When the room was nice and packed, we started in. It was a pretty cool show. The crowd produced a few screamers and dancers. Everyone was in.

Silver Treason followed us with some high energy honky-tonk and western swing. They were awesome. While they we playing we hung out with Tim and Patty (owners) who had a show with their own group, Whiskey Dick Mountain, earlier that night. By the end, we had to sneak out through a pressing crowd of beer drinkers and merry makers.

We passed out in a very cheap room soon after.

“You see, their beast carries them all over.” Kanaka nodded.

The three men looked solemnly into their drinks.

“So they are coming.” said Sir Kent. “What do we do?”

“We wait!” came a new voice from the hall. Bells jangled and strings hummed. “They are coming, but you have nothing to fear!”

A new traveler had climbed the stairs.

Next Episode… Eastern Washington, Apple Country, and the city of Chelan