We had a good time on our first mini tour. When I got frustrated by the traffic and the semi trucks on Highway 20 and when we got “attacked” by the fluffy white squirrel dog wearing a pink cheerleader dress, I reminded myself that those experiences pale in comparison to the crazy traffic of developing countries and the huge, gnarly, rabid dogs I have read so much about in other’s blogs. Not to mention that the 108 miles is a very small fraction of the distance. 1/167th, to be approximate.
When we rolled back into Leavenworth we were tired with sore bums and sunburns. We had spent the last four miles of the ride salivating over the thought of a relaxing ice cold beverage. We threw our bikes in the back of the Adventure Van, high-fived to a great trip, jumped in the front seat, and instead of hearing the purr of the van……..nothing. The starter had been acting up for a while, and now on the other side of the Cascades, she wasn’t cooperating.
Lucky for us, we had randomly parked in front of the friendliest house in Leavenworth. Larry was gardening in his yard and offered us a jump start. We were all pretty sure it wasn’t the battery, but, hey, its worth a try. No luck. We called AAA, which is a must when you are the proud owner on a 1992 Toyota Previa. They didn’t have anybody to tow us over the pass back to Seattle until the next day. We high-fived again to the fact that we had a really excellent excuse to call in sick the next day, and asked Larry if he could recommend a cheap hotel or nearby campground. After a short conference with his wife, Liz, Larry recommended a couple hotel options and then invited us to stay with them in their spare room! We were floored by their generosity!
We accepted and went off to get some dinner. As I put the first delicious bite of German bratwurst loaded with the fancy mustard and goodies into my mouth, I received a call from a tow truck operator saying he was at our car.
What?! Somewhere along the line communication had apparently fallen apart. Larry came running out to pick us up, watched me wash down a bite of brat with half a beer in one giant sip, and rushed us back to the incredibly friendly tow truck guy who worked magic and got the car started with some very aggressive key turning.
Yay! The car is fixed! Boo, we don’t get to hang with Larry and Liz! Boo, we have to go to work! Yay, we met such amazing people who made a situation that could have been a trip spoiler even better than it had been!
My hopes have been reinforced. I anticipate low times and challenges galore, but they will be balanced by the highs and the surprising experiences and people we will encounter.
Thank you Larry and Liz!!