Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Glacier National Park Road Trip - Day 10

The Two Old Buzzards and Fannie Mae went on an exploratory trip to Glacier National Park today to sort of get the lay of the land. They took their time getting up and about, so did not arrive at the West Entrance until around 9:30am. They went into the Apgar Visitor Center to stamp their passport, get a pin and talk to one of the rangers. They decided to explore a mostly unpaved road (Camus). Yes, even in a National Park the Two Old Buzzards managed to soon make their way to the unpaved roads . There were beautiful views of trees, mountains, puffy clouds, snow, wildflowers, old buildings and rivers. They saw  three deer, a squirrel, a dead skunk in the middle of the road (sounds like a good song title) and had some up close and personal contact with a few mosquitoes.

The Two Old Buzzards found both fauna and flora on today's
drive in and around Glacier National Park

By noon, the buzzard pair and Fannie had reached Polebridge which is a tiny Montana community outside the park. They stopped (as instructed by “Off the Beaten Path Montana” book) at Polebridge Mercantile and had a picnic lunch under some nice shady trees. Out back of the store was an air-conditioned outhouse (it had windows open to the sky) that you will see photos of in the gallery. There is a bakery in the mercantile. They are famous for their cinnamon buns but there were lots of other chocolaty and yeasty treats as well. It is next door to the Northern Lights Saloon and Cafe. It was not open for the day yet but Linda took photos of some old signs there.

The return from the park was on the same road (only one way in and one way out). They stopped to photo some giant reddish/orangish poppies that were the largest Linda had ever seen. The insides were a very interesting shape and were purple. Linda is going to cut the poppy pod to see if she can extract some kind of opiate.

They stopped at Huckville to try a slice of huckleberry pie but staffing was short-handed (literally) and the chief cook and bottle washer was having trouble grilling a hamburger. The grill was outside of what must have once been a drive through window and she had to stick her top half outside to tend to the grill, which must not have been cooperating. It was a pretty unusual arrangement (and sort of funny if you weren't her). Meanwhile there were other people in line in front of us so it seemed prudent to hold off on the huckleberries until tomorrow. Linda has her eye on some special socks John spotted for her while in line.

Back home in Whitefish John and Linda explored three stores in the vicinity of the Cheap Sleep Motel. There is an Army Navy store that has everything from dried food to bandannas and other doomsday prep items. Linda got a bandanna. John found a cable we needed at Radio Shack and we scoped out the Chinese Wall Restaurant.

The SONG O' THE DAY is “Let the Rest of the World Go By” by J. Keirn Bremman and Ernest Ball from The Daily Ukelele Songbook. It goes with the restful day. Some of the phrases in it are “where the west winds call”, “across the great divide”, “perfect peace” and “a kindly sky”. The great divide is also known as the continental divide and it DOES just HAPPEN to run through Glacier Park. Gene Autry was one of the first to record “Let the Rest of the World Go By”. Some others who did so later were Ringo Starr, Connie Francis, Pat Boone and that good old sausage makin' Plainview, TX boy Jimmy Dean. Linda is now up to Moon River (yikes, 12 different chords) on page 163. After several more songs beginning with the letter “M”, she will be approximately halfway through the book's 365 songs.

The old buzzards walked to the China Wall Restaurant for dinner. It was too close to bother with flying. John had the house special which was a combo of lo mein and crunchy noodles stir fried with vegies, beef, chicken, pork and shrimp with China Wall special sauce. Linda had oyster sauce chicken with baby corn, carrots, green peppers, snow peas, straw mushrooms and water chestnuts. While waiting for their meals they studied the Chinese Zodiac on the  place mats. John was born in 1944, the year of the monkey. Therefore he is very intelligent and is able to influence people (OK, some people). Linda (1943)  was born in the year of the sheep and thus is elegant and creative. Both the Monkey Buzzard and the Sheep Buzzard enjoyed their choices. The Monkey Buzzard's fortune said that his nurturing instinct will expand to include many people (can you say founder of Friends of the Morgan Hill Senior Center?). The Sheep Buzzard's fortune said that she should use her charm and personality to obtain her wishes (good luck with that). And there were two Chinese kisses (well, really Hershey kisses) on the plate with the fortune cookies. John said he was glad we hadn't eaten in a French restaurant.

There are 57 images in today's photo gallery which can be viewed by clicking here.

And so another lovely day comes to an end as the two old buzzards and their Fannie let the rest of the world go by.

Happy trails!

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