Day Two (Thursday, July 24) of our vacation found us driving across Wisconsin on a series of different highways, wondering to ourselves why we thought this route would be faster than getting on the Interstate. Wisconsin was beautiful, though, and we got gas for $3.93 a gallon. We finally got back to the I-94 and traveled across Minnesota (gas $3.79!) and into North Dakota. We made it to our motel in Bismarck by 10:30 p.m. I had agonized over this motel, debating between lowest price and highest likelihood of finding a room that was not nasty. I went for the Days Inn because it had supposedly just been completely remodeled, so I figured it would seem new and nice. I don't know about the rest of the place, but our room had DEFINITELY NOT been recently rennovated. I was super mad that we could have stayed in the Fairfield Inn for the same price, since I figured it would have been nicer. The Super 8 probably would have been nicer, and all of the other cheaper places. But it was 11 p.m. by the time we were all unloaded, and we just dropped into bed. The next morning we enjoyed the free breakfast of eggs, hashbrowns, pancakes, bacon, english muffins, juice, and FRUIT LOOPS. And a few Danishes.
Friday (July 25) we gained an hour by passing from the Central to Mountain time zone. Also, our drive was a bit shorter, so in all the day felt much more manageable. One mile before crossing into Montana, we stopped at a Flying J to get gas. There I purchased a North Dakota snow globe for a certain almost 11-year-old collector I know. Adam was worried that Esther would break it, so he took charge of its safety. In no time he had pulled the plug out of the bottom of it (why?) and it was leaking glitter water all over him. Arrrgh! A day or two later Dan found the plug and restored it, and I think the snow globe will survive.
We stayed on the I-94 through Bozeman, Montana, and then took the highway south through Big Sky. The scenery was beautiful. My favorite part of the trip was being stopped so that a huge herd of about 50 horses could cross the road from their dude ranch over to their pasture. We finally made it to Ashton, Idaho, and then on a series of smaller roads to the Rock Creek Girls' Camp, home of the 2008 Thurman Family Reunion. We arrived at 7:00 p.m., just in time for a dinner of lasagne, salad & garlic bread. Then we bedded down in our A-frame cabin for the night. Next post: all about the Thurman Family Reunion.