Saturday, October 6, 2012
All’s Well That Ends in Wells
Fair Weather Walker
I am at the Motel Six in Wells, Nevada. Wells is an oasis of sorts at least for Walkers like me. I am told that Wells, established in 1927, is named for the Springs-Wells that helped it to become a major stopping point on the highways 90 and 93.
The Fair Weather Walker gave up the Trek after crossing into Nevada from Idaho. I passed through Jackpot on Wednesday evening. I had a memorable couple hours in the tiny berg of Rogerson, Idaho, just a few miles from the border.
I went to the only commercial spot in town hoping for more than a convenience store and found store and cafe operated by Anita Robinson. She had seen me on the road previously. And we took up a friendly conversation while she made me eggs, hashbrowns, toast and milk.
Anita felt like a kindred spirit. She is a Mormon, mother of just two daughters, who is devoted to her religion. We talked freely and I could easily tell that she was a real light in her tiny business, little community and LDS church in Jackpot.
I saw on the cafe menu items like Helen's Breakfast Special. When a little old lady appeared in the attached shop, I had to introduce myself. “You must be Helen. My son’s name was Helen. I am just passing through but wanted to say Hello. I’m Robert.”
Helen immediately told me, “My son’s name is Robert.”
I introduced Anita to Fannie the Flag. And she told me about the Angel Moroni before I parted for the last miles to Nevada.
Jackpot was welcome, but a short stay. The town is host to several casinos and little more, being posted on the border between states and the edge of the desert. A young man named Chris Young helped me get sodas for haul ahead.
I had a meal and loaded my pack as much as I could. Then, set out into the night towards Wells - 67 miles away. I made a few miles before “camping” in the sagebrush next to the highway. It was really cold in the morning, bottles of water and soda frozen in the am.
Officer Scott (never got his last name) stopped twice in the next two days to check on me and offer me rides to Wells. I resisted. There was still some greenery at least in the distance and an occasional stream to water my feet.
But, shortly after our second day visit, all greenery except dried sagebrush disappeared. There was nowhere to get away from the sun during the day and the very cold night temperatures. I was not planning to give up on the stroll until a couple of vans passed by, stopped, and offered a ride. I gave in and am glad I did. Those next forty miles would have been brutal.
Riding quickly to Wells, I could see what I gladly missed walking. Absolutely no water, dry and dryer sagebrush, and no shelter - nothing like a tree - along the route.
I took a room at Motel Six for the night and am waiting for a friend from California to pick me up and carry me to northern California.
Part two of the Adventure begins now. Meeting new and old friends, and doing some house painting. I will be back in Montana November.
Thanks to my rescuers from Idaho - Linda, Wes, Trevor and Cheryl - who continued on toward Alabama. And thanks to everyone who has helped me down the road by thought, prayer, word or deed.
Comments always welcome at theportableschool at gmail dot com.