Yesterday Jeffrey slipped under the radar. This morning, two people in Saltese saw him loading our gear and chatted with him.
Dave lives in Saltese. He’s a retired building contractor, whose father was a Navy nurse for 3 decades. His sister-in-law was born and raised in Mexico. A friend with a cherry orchard praises his immigrant workers. Dave seems more concerned about migrating Californians and Seattleites inflating the price of land, than he does about good people who are willing to work.
Stacy grew up in Albany, NY, drove a NYC taxi for 15 years, spent a summer working at a national park, and decided she likes the itinerant life. She lives out of a minivan, says with a commercial driver license (CDL) one can find work anywhere, and is traveling to Alaska for her next adventure. Part of her motive for travel is to give her mom exotic places to visit. Stacy agrees with our observation that almost everyone is kind and means well. She thinks if more Americans travel as she does and we do, mingling with people from outside our bubbles, some of our country’s wounds would heal.
Today we did plenty of climbing, enjoyed fast downhills, and—as ever—rolled with the punches.
Every two to three seconds: Brrrr-RUMP! Brrrr-RUMP! Brrrr-RUMP! It rattled us. It slowed us way down.
After two miles, the rumble strips ended. We don’t know why.
A few miles later, they resumed. We don’t know why.
Jeffrey, unsure how long we had to put up with this, found a route off I-90. It would add 9 miles to our day. Should we try it?
After 4 more miles of Brrrr-RUMPs, we gave up and exited onto a small paved road.
We hailed a couple building a 1950s-style barbed wire fence.
Holly and Glen interrupted their work to give us valuable route advice. Following their directions, we pedaled 5 miles to the town of Superior, where we peeked at I-90 and saw that somewhere between our exit and the Superior on-ramp, the rumble strips had discontinued. We took a chance and got back on I-90. The pavement was smooth all the way to Missoula.
As valuable as the route advice was Holly’s perspective. She thinks America’s immigration and refugee system is too complex and expensive. She says we need to make it easier for immigrants to do the things that we, and they, want them to do, such as escape persecution, work openly, pay taxes, and earn the right to become American citizens. And she despairs of politicians putting aside their greed and anger to make this happen.
Holly calls herself a conservative. The term has been used and misused into meaninglessness. We call Holly and Glen thoughtful, humanitarian, and kind.
Since we left Seattle a week ago, our general direction has been east.
Next we turn south.
Stressful ride. Glad that you made it without any incidents. Keep on rolling!