Thursday 21 March
Ohmegod! What a ball breaking, white knuckled ride that was! We
traversed through some of the worst weather the North Dakota and
Montana States could throw at us. Chris and Tim drove on through
the graveyard shift (as Steve had been driving all day) Gawd
blessem! Zero visibility with black-ice on the roads. Swirling
snow obscured the white lines, so much so that the lanes just kept
disappearing from view. This was doubly scary when the right hand
side of the road turned into a sheer drop as we entered the Rocky
Mountains. By this time, I was so tired that I curled up in the
back of the van and dreamt of sunnier climes.
I was rudely awoken at around 6.00am by Anthony, who wanted to
point out the amazing landscape now surrounding us. Despite the
stunning spectacle, I could care less and returned to my dream
sipping ice cold Margaritas on a beach in Hawaii, served by local
lovelies in grass skirts!!
Arrived in Missoula at around 7.00am. Managed to check into the
Hotel 6 and then collapsed with the rest of my comrades
for some much needed shut-eye.
4 hours, and as many coffees each later, we were fighting fit
(ish!) and ready to take on the Missoula nightlife! A beautiful
college town situated in the Rocky Mountains. I think it was originally
an Indian reserve that had expanded into one of the only towns between
Minneapolis and Seattle.
Checked out Jays, the venue for tonights performance.
Interesting clientele, to say the least. After a bite to eat we
waited inside the van, (trying to stay warm in the sub-zero temperatures)
for the 7.00pm load in. The back entrance of the venue was very
much like the Wacky Goldmine Ride in Barry Island. Water
had leaked on to the floor and frozen into a treacherous sheet of
ice. A law-suite waiting to happen!
The venues promoter, Colin, was a really cool guy who insisted
on plying us with free shots followed by beer chasers, every 5 minutes!
The room soon filled up with some colourful characters great
atmosphere. We followed the first band local lads who had
a penchant for playing a frantic set with each individual member
playing different songs at once!
Our show was full of energy. The audience seemed to enjoy themselves
and Chris made friends with a young Botanist who was studying locally!
After another hilarious trip down the Wacky Goldmine, we headed
back to the hotel, stopping en-route at a garage for some 1 dollar
hotdogs, served by a miserable Mick Fleetwood lookalike!