(Non) Travel Day 5 — The Endless White Void

No map today, we are still in York Nebraska.

There is a Starbucks about 1500 feet from here but the roads are too icy to walk or drive it. Even if we walked, since we can’t eat in the store, we’d be eating ice cold food when we got back.

Though, we could warm it up in the microwave…hmmm…

Last night we walked over to the Walmart because we couldn’t find the cat food in the trailer. The tabby was starting to give me that “which parts of you are the juiciest?” look, so I felt this trip was fairly urgent. It was a cold, windy walk, but the Walmart was deserted. We picked up some Amy’s frozen dinners and laundry detergent and made our way back through the overnighting semis to our hotel.

Today there is precious little to do, so we started watching videos on RVing and learned a bunch of stuff. Tomorrow, weather permitting, I will drive the “rig” over to the CAT Weigh station and find out exactly how much weight it has on each of its axles. How have I lived without this knowledge?! Boredom is a powerful motivator.

If you’re curious, check out http://fitrv.com.

The hotel suddenly seemed a lot less safe when we saw the maids doing their work without masks, leaving several doors open at a time as they worked their way down the hall. This seems to have bothered Maya more than me, but only because she’s more perceptive. Once she pointed it out I was really annoyed. Their safety precautions are more marketing than science.

Many of the guests are wandering around mask-free, and the hotel staff isn’t saying a word about it. There are signs etc. but apparently that’s as far as they’ll go for enforcement. Little wonder that our Covid problem is among the worst in the world.

We think we’ll have good weather tomorrow and Thursday so the tentative plan is to get to Cheyenne WY tomorrow and then Ogden Utah the day after. There’s more snow coming in Friday night, so we may get another hotel for that night and see how things look on Saturday.

From Ogden, the trip gets more interesting because we’ll be in the Rockies, and then the Cascade range, and we’ll be on a road (I-84) that neither of us has driven before. A friend shared that the grades around Baker OR are “FUN” in a way that made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. Planning extra time to get through there slowly. Most of 84 looks pretty level-it follows a river for most of it’s length through Idaho.

Wind farms in Iowa.

I forgot to mention that most of western Iowa, along I-80, seems to be given over to wind farms. We were driving through there on Saturday night and I saw this huge grid of red lights all blinking in unison. We speculated about what they might be, as we drove under the first group, and came up with a bunch of completely wrong answers (communications network, airport markers, etc) finally one of them was backlit well enough for us to see that it was a wind turbine. And there are hundreds of them. At some point I’ll have to look up how much power they generate.

Leia scopes out western Iowa.

And finally, since I’m in catch-up mode, here’s a picture of our tortie in her lookout tunnel. She is directly behind the driver’s seat in this shot. Both the cats go up there during the day, but don’t really hang out. THey spend a few minutes seeing what’s going on and then head back to the safety of their padded milk crate.

Here at the hotel, they are very alert to the hallway sounds. They’ve never had to deal with this before. It must be quite startling.

I am a bear living among humans, and have gotten so good at it that people rarely notice. I am a husband, step-father, author, musician, and much else.