We’ve fled Montana. A massive snow storm was coming our way and it was time to leave. That was Friday. Today is the first mostly sunny day we’ve seen. Trailer life is so mush nicer when it’s dry outside. But what’s a little discomfort when we’ve had so much more drama. The last two weeks: Three bears, front wheel bearings went out, the clutch linkage went out, Chava projectile vomited the wasabi peas he stole in the cab during a rain storm while moving, it rained and snowed so much that the inside walls were dripping, the Heat Buddy stopped working, we got stuck in the mud, and a trailer tire blew out.
On the upside Burt made mac and cheese, the bears didn’t eat me, all repairs were easily made if expensive, my spider egg hatched, and we had a nice turn around Camas National Wildlife Refuge. So here we are.
Yesterday we pulled up a sketchy road towards the Hawk Watch trailhead. This was after the vomiting, two truck repairs, and wet Olive scowls. Actual humans had told us it would be easy to pull our trailer in and camp. They suggested the Hawk Watch volunteers would love us if we brought chocolate and adult beverages. We had such happy thoughts of seeing eagles and hawks getting tagged and released. We stocked up on adult beverages and chocolate. The actual humans might not have been aware that a spring had hatched on the road and that there was a new steep, slick detour to avoid the morass. We arrived at the bottleneck and faced a risky attempt at trying the steep detour or a quarter mile back-up on a muddy but flat double track road. We parked and ate mac and cheese. There was vigorous but not heated discussion of our options. To get to sleep we deluded ourselves with the hope of roads drying or freezing enough to allow our passage. Of course, neither happened. In fact it all seemed wetter and more hopeless in the morning. This morning.
Burt made biscuits. We slathered them in butter and Todd’s homemade marmalade. I love Todd’s marmalade. I think we were carbo loading so we had the strength to face the agonizing reversal. While I was snoozing Burt had come to grips with the 1/4 mile backup. It wasn’t so bad once he got started. A little swiggly wiggly back and forth and he kept the trailer in the path. It took about 20 minutes. I walked along outside and minded my business. The day was looking up even if we did have to miss the birds.
Burt pulled off the highway just north of Ely, Nevada so we could eat lunch. He exited the vehicle looked at the trailer and said, “Holy Fuck.” We might be a bit to free with the F-bombs around here but Burt’s ashen face told me something really bad was about to become known to me. My thoughts immediately went to we clipped a cyclist and didn’t notice. Burt says I’m watching too many zombie shows. The situation was much less terrible but very scary. We’d blown out a tire on the trailer. Who knows when? The rim was shot and the tire shredded. How had we not wrecked? Could we change it? Well, yes we could. I Googled how to change a dualie tire. Drive up on a platform instead of a jack. So Burt got to building a series of platforms and we inched our way higher and higher. Then our knights in shining armor arrived. A tow truck guy out of Cedar City and his four year old son rolled up and offered to help. They had one of those super jacks.
Burt and our nameless superhero had the old tire off and the spare on in less that 15 minutes. Meanwhile, Chapman(?) and I laughed at Burt’s butt crack and examined our surroundings. Chapman wasn’t big on enunciation so I’m not confident I got his name correct. He offered me a piece of gum and was stunned when I declined. I told him he’d enjoy it more than me. Then he said (in earshot of his dad) don’t tell my dad. I’m not certain what I wasn’t supposed to tell his dad. That he had gum? That I didn’t like gum? I showed him our dogs, a dead deer leg, and a painted rock. He had to pee. I promised not to look. The job was done just like that and they refused payment. We motored into Ely and bought a new tire. While Burt waited on the tire I walked the dogs and found a domestic rabbit on the loose. A small, well groomed terrier was barking at the black and white floppy bunny. Back at the tire shop a heavily tattooed older woman was yelling loudly that the tire guys though she was a dumb bitch. Tire guys couldn’t find a leak in her tire. Somehow this was them trying to scam her. I didn’t like this scene since the two females were yelling about the men thinking they were stupid bitches and I was afraid I’d be asked to take sides. I decided to go back to the bunny and try to find the bunny’s home. I went back and snapped a picture. I walked around looking for a hutch in a yard or a sad lost bunny sign. No luck but the dissatisfied customers had left when I returned.
We are safe and dry and fed and warm. All is well. Burt was a super human today. XOXO Burt.