One of these days some Canadian is going to punch me for making fun of that. Eh?
This has been one of those longish days that when it’s over (the riding part) it’s difficult to look back and link it all together.
I started by having breakfast at Frank’s Diner in Spokane, same place I had meatloaf dinner last night followed by a generous helping of heartburn. Their menu declared they’d won the “Best Breakfast in Spokane” for 11 out of the last 12 years so I chanced it this morning. Some folks might have wondered if the year they didn’t win was 2009 but not me, I’m the one who believes in fate, heartburn or not. It was great, French toast, eggs, bacon just the way I like it, and lots of decent coffee. I sat at the counter where I could watch the show going on as the cooks and wait staff performed their magic. One waitress buttered and sliced two huge pieces of toast with her left hand while holding two loaded platters of food in her right hand, all the while dodging other workers who scurried through the narrow confines they had to work in. From watching her I don’t think she was left-handed. I wouldn’t have lasted two minutes back there.
It's odd how sometimes you notice people and form opinions about them based on their behavior. The young couple sitting next to me seemed to be in luuuv…she was pretty and he was handsome. He picked his nose. I mentally screamed at her “Get rid of him, he’ll only get worse!” Doubtful that she got my message though. Karma I suppose.
Following the commands of the GPS God I rode out of town in a northerly direction, missing a turn or two which gave me the opportunity to see parts of Spokane most likely reserved for bus loads of Mormons on holiday. Eventually I got back on course and enjoying the sunshine and 65 mph speed limits I flogged on. Sometimes I flogged even faster.
Along the way and well into northern Idaho (I think) I spotted a great junkyard of mostly older American cars. I love those places so I had to stop and eyeball a few of their offerings. Finds like that are part of what makes traveling around so much fun, especially on a bike which allows you to reverse course quickly. Sometimes suprisingly so.
Crossing the border into Canada at Rykerts I followed the Crows Nest highway, meandering until it reached Elko where I stopped for lunch. There were two choices of eateries and I went with the second, mainly because it was on the far end of town and I didn’t want to retrace my route back to the first one. Besides, they had a $5.00 hamburger-fries-medium drink thing going and I find those hard to resist.
After lunch I spent a few minutes in the parking lot washing the bugs off my visor, then climbed aboard and headed out, presumably to resume my ride east. Not. Along comes this tiny little yellow jacket and he decides the inside of my helmet looks inviting and all he needed to do was sting me and I’d vacate leaving the entire helmet to him. He was partially right, I was moving at walking speed and it soon became apparent that if I let go of the bike to swat the bee the bike would go into her lie-down for a nap routine. If any of you happened to follow my blog of three years ago you’ll recall how the Ninja took two similar naps in one day? For some reason she likes to lay on her right side which is exactly what she did today. While I was busy doing “there’s a yellow jacket in my helmet” boogie a lady came out of the restaurant and decided I might need a bit of help. Through sign language and lip sync she came to my rescue and together we managed to move el-Nino off her butt and back onto her kickstand. I thanked her profusely and as the show was over, remounted and once more resumed the eastward journey.
The rest of the afternoon was uneventful other than stopping for photo-ops a couple of times, once for an on-going and seemingly unattended forest fire. Whoa, did I say a forest fire was uneventful? As it happened I was the only camera geek stopping to take pictures, all the other motorists pressed on, probably late for a golf date or something.
Around 4:45pm I arrived in the village of choice, Fernie, where I checked into the local Travelodge for the night. Not a Motel 6 in sight so what else could I do? Dinner was at the place next door called Rip & Ricks… I admit, I had a few reservations about eating in an establishment with the letters “RIP” emblazened in the name but it turned out to be a good choice. Their focus is mainly on pizza and ribs but they also offer chicken enchiladas so I opted for that. Have you ever had an enchilada prepared by a pizza guy? No? Well let me tell you, the making of one must require a pretty bazaar combination of talent and creativity. In this instance you end up with a huge tortilla – about the same size as a medium pizza crust rolled up and with a similar texture – filled with rice and smoked chicken looking suspiciously like pizza ingredients. Except for the rice of course, I’m clueless where that came from. Rice pizza perhaps? Slather a glob of sour cream across one end, add a handful of thin chopped lettuce which resembles Cilantro in appearance but loses something in the taste department and there you have it, enchilada ala pizza man. It was actually quite good.
Now that I'm finished with my evening repast I find myself once again cloistered in my tiny cell, about to pry the stopper off the remains of an extremely small vial of McNaughton’s finest Elixir & Cough Suppressant which I intend to consume along with an equal portion of left-over 7-Up, all in the interests of the advancement of science and personal edification.