Day 2 was long. After getting out of the smoke-detecting hotel, I then wasted 45 minutes at the most frustrating gas station I’ve ever visited.
The drive was nice - the mountains in Utah were beautiful, and the Columbia River Gorge is one of the most scenic places ever - it just took forever. Somehow I forgot about Idaho. So I was all mentally prepared for the day to go something like “Leave Wyoming, skip through the corner of Utah, and then head on up and around through Oregon!” I was not psychologically prepared for another state, and a big one at that. I thought mapquest must have just been like 6 hours off when it said it’d be 12 to get to Portland.
The good thing about Idaho existing was that I had lunch at Jack in the Box. I don’t think I’ve eaten at Jack in the Box since Sara and I went to San Diego in March ‘05. I also got to read the local paper as I sat waiting for them to make my food after I ordered it.
So along the drive, the interview with pop culture writer and Evel Knievel biographer Steve Mandich was set up through a series of phone calls. However, it was set up for 10:30am in Seattle, which meant my night wouldn’t end after reaching Portland.
My friend and former DN co-worker Quentin now lives and works in Portland, and he had the day off, so he was going to come along to Seattle. I stopped at his place for a while to unwind and experience the refreshing joys of the internet, and then we headed north.
We swung through a McDonald’s on the other side of the Oregon / Washington border, and they had bacon cheeseburgers! I’ve never seen those at a McDonald’s. I asked the order-taker in the window if they were a test market for the things, and she didn’t know, but the idea of being a test market really excited her.
They weren’t anything special - they were literally just McDonald’s cheeseburgers with a few strips of really hard bacon on them. Quentin wondered if it wasn’t a way to get rid of the morning’s leftover bacon.
I was getting pretty exhausted by this point, after having spent around 15 hours on the road, so we stopped in Tacoma. I read up on my Human Fly information and checked the equipment, and that was that.