California 2016

Day 02

June 19

  Today's route is pretty simple - turn on I80, ride 830+ miles, then get off I80. I get SweetTreat ready roll and we are off like a dirty shirt.  
  I80 will be my friend pretty much for all day long.  
  There's nobody out this morning except the truckers. The temps are still pretty nice so I'm enjoying it while I can.  
  Coming toward me I see the pieces and parts of one of those windmill generators. First comes the 'head' ...  
  then one of the props followed by the other two props. It's pretty amazing to me that it takes four semis just to haul the head and the props, not to mention how many it takes to haul the 'stalk' or mounting base.  
  I can't quite figure out what this thing is over the Interstate, but it appears to be some sort of 'tourist trap'. I'm just glad there's no flypaper for motorcycles hanging down over the slab.  
  But soon my attention returns to a construction zone which interrupts the regularly schedule programming.  
  And just when I get by this one and am enjoying the lovely lake view ...  
  I'm right back in another one.  
  I can't help but notice just how brown and dry the area is for as far as my feeble vision allows me to look.  
  It's time for a fuel and de-fuel break and this sign let's me know that I have arrived exactly where I thought I was - right in the middle of NoWhere. I look around but I don't see any fat dogs anywhere. Matter of fact, I don't see any skinny dogs either.  
  Having taken care of business, I get back to the business at hand. Along the way, a train gives me chase but it is no match for the dauntless SweetTreat.  
  As I mosey across Nebraska, I often have the place to myself - or at least it feels that way. You learn on trips like this that you'd better like your own company or you'll be a pretty lonesome feller.  
  I wonder if this is a field of the Brassicaceae family of plants (Canola plants for regular folks) or just some wild growth in a field left to itself.  
  Off in the distance I see another sort of 'plant' growth but they sure are ugly looking mushrooms to me.  

This is also known as part of the Lincoln Highway. The 'tale' of the statue goes like this (from my other trip through here) -

It seems that it was commissioned by the state of Wyoming in 1959 to honor the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's birth, and placed here in 1969 when I80 was completed. It marks the highest point (8,640 feet above sea level) of the old Lincoln Highway (which is now I80) that ran from coast to coast. I have to wonder if he is sadly contemplating the declining moral state of the country that he perished trying to keep together.

  But once again I've got to switch gears as I head into yet another construction zone.  
  I have this fascination with snow covered mountains and this is the first one of many that I will see on this trip.  
  But my scenic enjoyment is interrupted again as it's back to construction zone land.  

When I make my next stop, I meet Pryor, a service dog. His human is blind and he provides her a great service. I ask her -

"Is it okay to pet him since he's a service dog?"

She says "That's fine since he's not in harness."

I tell her my usual -

"I reckon a dog will love you when nobody else will."

He's a lovely, sweet boy and enjoys getting petted by an experienced dog petter like me. In fact I think I hear him say -

"I'll give you thirty minutes to stop" or at least something like that.

I tell the lady that I'll be traveling about 800 miles today. She is a bit amazed by that and then her husband tells her -

"By the way he's on a motorcycle."

"You are one strong man to do that" she exclaims.

"Well, I don't know about that. Probably just a little crazy" I tell her and we both laugh.

But the highway waits for no one, so I wish them and Pryor well and get back after it.

  As I leave Nebraska and enter Wyoming, the landscape takes new shapes.  
  And every now and then I get a little heat relief as I pass through a tunnel.  
  But soon it's back to construction zone land again. It makes me feel like I'm playing Monopoly and keep getting sent to jail.  
  I guess out here where the wind blows most of the time makes it a great place for wind powered generators.  
  And one more time around the Monopoly Board I reckon ...  
  It's an interesting descent from Wyoming into the Salt Lake City area where I will be spending the evening.  
  I've got a little south jag on I270 to get to motel but I'm sure glad when I get there.  

After I get checked in and cleaned up, I ask the lady at the desk if there is any place in walking distance for a decent sit down meal instead of fast food. She directs me up the street to a particular restaurant folks have told her is good. So I head that way and make my entrance. I ask the two hostesses if they have a nice quiet booth somewhere as it's been a long, warm day for me. They get me seated in one and provide a loaf of bread to munch on while I wait for my server. After server after server passes me by I'm beginning to wonder what's up. After about fifteen minutes, I decide that maybe my booth is just a little too quiet. I figure if this is their service level, then I'm at the wrong place. I go back to the hostess and ask her -

"My server never showed up, so what do I owe you for the bread?"

She's a bit flustered and says "Nothing. I'll wait on you myself."

I tell her "Don't bother, I'll just mosey on along" figuring if their attention to detail is no better than that, the food probably suffers from the same disease.

I wander back to the local Wendy's figuring they have air conditioning and I should be able to get some grub. But the poor young thing taking my order there has something going on in her purple dyed head of hair more than the business at hand. I have to repeat my order a couple of times before she finally gets it. It seems that her synapses are not synapsing or her ears are not connected to her cerebral cortex. Fortunately my order does finally come up and I quietly find a place to sit to consume my vittles. Somedays getting something to eat is just an adventure in itself. I wander back cross the road to my now very cool room and collapse into a sleeping heap in short order.