The Scamp now sits behind the Beaver Creek Brewery, where Jim, the owner, set us up in a second-floor apartment above the abstract company’s office on the main street of little Wibaux, Montana—a boon because of the rain that now pounds down. Apparently, the owner of the apartment owns pretty much the whole town—the accounting office, the grocery store, and acts as the county judge.
Main street Wibaux:
On our way from Billings to Wibaux, through the plains, Rosa and I spotted a silver glint ahead of us on the freeway, and as we approached saw that it was a CD rolling like hell down the road. On its way to Wibaux? Imitating tumbleweed? Indicating some musical message to us?
Yesterday, in Red Lodge, we followed our friend Paul Otsu into the mountains behind Red Lodge, where I stood behind a waterfall in the afternoon before playing harmonica to an enthusiastic group at Natali’s Front Bar, downtown. At that gig, Rosa even managed to get people dancing. It was our most enthusiastic crowd yet.
Leila, me, Rosa:
A couple guys from Arkansas and Texas showed up—Brandon and John—who are in Red Lodge for the summer “living the dream,” as John kept putting it. They’re spending the summer camping and doing “fuel reduction” in the forests—cutting down trees and clearing underbrush to help prevent forest fires. They drank enough beer to be fire hazards themselves, I think.
Rosa downs Throat Coat tea to try to save her fading voice, and I down coffee to try to fuel the engine that keeps the Jeep and Scamp cruising down the freeway. We pass through things we’d love to stop and see, knowing that we were overly ambitious in our planning. Then again, that’s what fun about it—the insane progression, the never stopping, the onward push.
Neal Cassidy would understand.
But we also leave things in our wake, like coveted blocks of cheese, pillows, camera battery chargers, and some energy.