Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Oh Idaho, Why Hast Though Forsaken Me?

To be clear, I have nothing against Idaho. I think it is a very beautiful state and my own dear brother was born there. Idaho, however, does not feel the same way about me. When driving to Montana, I told Bear the directions... get on the 15 going North and don't turn till Missoula. Pretty simple right? Well, except for the Bermuda Triangle around Pocatello.
Our friend Robert had made the trip three weeks before us. He told us he had stopped in Dubois for gas. Every sign I passed, I kept looking for Dubois. We never saw one. Hmmm... maybe Dubois is just past Boise, since we kept seeing signs for Boise. (This is the point in the story where people who know Idaho better than us realize Boise is not on the 15 going North.) After filling up our gas tanks in Boise and thinking it was weird Robert could make it further than this without having to pee, we got back on the freeway and than saw the sign that made our hearts sink... West 84. That's not North 15. How could this be? We never took an exit... well apparently that was the problem.

I quickly called MomStar, which is my mom and mapquest on her computer. I told her where we were and asked her to look up how far we were off course. We were really hoping it was just a small detour back to the 15. That's when I heard her swear. She broke the news to us. Around Pocatello, the 15 exits to the right and we had stayed to the left, which then turns into the 84. Boise is three hours past Pocatello. There is no short cuts back to the 15. We could have driven for ten days and never made it to Montana, because in fact, we were quite close to Oregon. Our only option was to go all the way back to Pocatello and try again. This is when I heard Bear swear.

We were both in denial, so we called our friend Aaron for a second opinion. Then we called Robert for a third opinion. Unfortunately Mapquest does not lie. (Well most of the time, but that's a different story.) We began our way back. Our ten hour roadtrip was now going to take 16 hours. I said, "This trip is cursed!" As soon as the words left my mouth, I wanted to take them back. Afterall, we still had a long way to go.

We had been in Pocatello at two that afternoon and we found ourselves back there at eight. It sucked, but wouldn't you know it... right outside of Pocatello was a sign for Dubois. We stopped there for gas, since we needed it again. Big mistake, because the rental car would not start back up. Isn't that why you get a rental, so you don't have to worry about your old car breaking down??? My husband, the impromptu mechanic got us back on the road and this is where the real nightmare began.

We made it into Montana, just in time for some very thick fog. Our last three hours of driving were filled with many prayers as we crept our way through a bloodbath of dead animals. If it was in a horror movie, I would have thought it too unbelievable. I'm from Missouri and we have plenty of roadkill, but I have never seen anything like this. Mangled deer everywhere and literally the streets red with blood. Gross! Just what two tired drivers need, the fear of wrecking into an animal. What a way to end the night.

In the end, we made it to Kalispell without harm. On a positive note, I read somewhere if you want to test the strength of your relationship, you should get lost on a roadtrip. Bear and I passed the test with flying colors. We had no arguing, no blame-shifting, just a few choice words for Idaho and then reluctant acceptance of our fate. Noodle also handled the trip well once we let him out of his carrier. For those animal activists out there, I know he's safer in the carrier, but is he really safer if he's so upset he's foaming at the mouth and panting like he's having a heart attack? It's a hard call, so I went with peacefully sleeping on a blanket. The End.


Chrislynn said...

This story made me laugh out loud! I am sorry for all the confusion, but it makes a great story.

Heidi said...

Never been a big fan of Idaho, myself.

Jensens said...

They really do need to mark that better. I go up there all of the time - to Blackfoot. Sorry about your trip, but it did make me laught out loud, too - but in a sympathetic way ;)

IrisLillie said...

Are you absolutely sure I cussed??

That just really doesn't sound like me at all.

Where in the World is Kevin? said...

Same thing happened to me on the same highway, only I was supposed to be going to Portland. It was my first trip to Portland my first year in Logan. I was riding with a friend and we were both going to spend Thanksgiving at his sister's place and deliver some set pieces (which paid for the trip, in the rental truck). My friend fell asleep and told me to 'just turn on highway 'X' (I forget the number now). He woke up a few hours later and said, 'how we doin'?' And I said, 'Great! We passed the Montana border about an hour ago.' Then he said, very quietly, 'we're not supposed to be anywhere near Montana.'

Hoo - were we both pissed. We didn't talk to each other for the rest of the long day. The only think we could do was backtrack, like you guys.

Yeah, makes for a good story but it sure ain't fun to experience.

The Bears said...

You definitely swore mom, but do you like how I conveniently left out my own swearing?

IrisLillie said...

OK,, If we are all going to tell our wrong way stories, do they have to be an Idaho tale, or can I tell you mine from Pennsylvania?

I had just started this blood pressure medicine that I did NOT like at all. I was to take it in the morning & when I did, I would literally pass out and sleep for a couple of hours.

I drove most of the night so I could sleep after my morning pill, and then my friend Jan would take over. We stopped for breakfast almost dead center in the state on I-80. I took the pill, walked to the car, let the seat down and was "out" like a light.

When I woke up two hours later, I had a bad feeling as it seemed I was seeing the same scenery. It was a cloudy day, no sun to get my bearing, so I had to wait for a town name, and then look at the map.

Jan had just about made it too the Ohio state line, again.

She was not in the mood to stop for lunch as we passed the breakfast diner again two hours after we turned back towards the East.