My Route

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Day 62: Saturday, 1st September. REST DAY #8: Bel Aire Motel, Missoula, Montana

Today, I took my bike to Missoula Bicycle Works to get my gears tuned. Turned out that bike chains have a lifetime of around 2,000 miles, and mine had stretched to it's very limit: Not only did the guy recommend that I replace it, but that I replace the rear cassette, too, as the links of the chain wear down the teeth of the cassette. All my hard work of yesterday morning! For nothing! Ah well, it was kind of therapeutic, and the cat was good company. Leaving the shop with a bike gleaming like new, I reckoned it was about time I cleaned myself up a bit too, so I popped into Roosters barbershop for a haircut. Turned out to be a rather excellent place where my barber, Peter, not only gave me a great cut but an old-fashioned hot-towel shave, too. I don't think my face has been that smooth since I was a baby. Plus they offered me a cold beer, just for turning up.

And finally, off to Paula's for supper dans le jardin. Who is Paula, you might ask? It's tempting to come up with some wild story, but the truth is she's a friendly woman I sat down beside at the concert last night. She and her husband were having a dinner party for some friends, and invited me to join them. We had a lovely evening eating delicious food in their back garden. Her son, a fisherman, told us many a tale of fishing the Alaskan seas down to California, searching for barnacles and mermaids, Yarrr… Or perhaps it was squid, by moonlight…

And tomorrow, I head off into the Rockies.