Sooo, I have made it to West Yellowstone, a tiny village in Montana just on the state line and the accompanying entrance to its namesake. I am 24 hours late because the bus was somehow full yester… wait, the day…-

Oh man, my sense of time is all screwed up. Twenty-six hours on Greyhound, woo.

A bright and early start (with my pre-purchased ticket) saw me leave the spires of Seattle behind, a Starbucks munchable in my hand and a diligently charged set of amusements in my bag. The scenery en route was absolutely gorgeous, at least to start with. The Rockies, of course, claw their way north up through Idaho, and the spine of America is just as stunning up here as it was down in Colorado. There are differences: here the rocks are sharp grey instead of soft roseate, and the tall pines rummage their roots over rolling hills as opposed to the megalithic chunks of rock and flat sierras that comprise the range’s tail end. But passing by still lakes with their swift streams, and through the toothy mountain passes that snaggle the skyline, the sense of wonder is exactly the same. I spent a great deal of time simple staring out of the window, until night fell and the landscape was swallowed up.

I had a six-hour layover in Butte, Montana, a tiny town of 33,000 that nonetheless contrives to be the second-largest settlement in the state. It was dark, and extremely cold, so I lined up four chairs and my towel and got what patchy rest I could. Which turned out to be, none.

Oh, also, the TV was blaring the entire time I was there, adverts and all. And now I understand why so many people here are crazy.

By the time I dragged myself on to the 7am departure for Idaho Falls, I was barely aware of what was going on. It was freezing outside, enough to see one’s breath, and I sort of folded in on myself and thought no more of anything until we reached our destination. I then took another transfer, which lead to another transfer. For once I had had the foresight to arrange all this in advance, and luckily the companies were very helpful in accommodating my delay. The times stayed the same, and so I religiously trusted my notepad scribblings as the rest of my brain gave up on me.

The patchy sleep I had claimed – twenty minutes here or there – was just enough to keep me cognizant of the only other two people in the shuttle: the driver and a chap from North Carolina. The latter had come to Yellowstone to shoot stuff with a rifle almost as long as I am tall. I was in no business to ponder the ethics of this in any depth, and was more fascinated by his accent. Somehow he was putting ‘u’s into his sentences where they really had no right to be. I swear he pronounced his ‘o’s with an umlaut. I was so absorbed in the phonics of his speech that I was actually slightly startled when he proffered a small round tin of foul-looking black stuff to me over his shoulder. My default reaction was to decline, and then I found out what it was.

‘Chewin’ tobaacuö,’ he clarified, waving it under my nose again. I was feeling really rather too fragile to deal with this right now, so I repeated my declination. He shrugged and turned back around, and then I found out something about chewing tobacco. The driver winked at me.
‘It’ll make yer girlfrein’ real happy,’ he said, knowingly. I had no idea why this would be. Surely it couldn’t smell that nice? My head was in no state to think about such things. My confusion was soon put to rights, however, by the hunter.
‘Yep,’ he said cheerfully, ‘stuff’ll make yer dick harder thanna brick.’

At this point in time I became very interested in the grass by the roadside.

The rest of my journey passed without event and I found myself in Yellowstone at around 4pm. After some poking around I found that the park is, in fact, entirely without public transport, so a matter of fifteen minutes before I started writing this I booked myself a tour that is due to start at 8:15am tomorrow. I hope I wake up.

5 Responses to “Yayhound”

  1. 1 Renée 09/09/2009 at 7:30 pm

    Sounds like an …interesting… trip.
    The roadside grass is a much better option than the tobacco…

  2. 3 Renée 09/09/2009 at 7:31 pm

    Also, I probably should’ve waited to post a comment. Your entry may now be cursed. :-/

  3. 4 TK-42-1 10/09/2009 at 8:30 am

    wait, who doesn’t like rock hard dick?

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