July 12th Dickinson, North Dakota
We started the day with Turkey Days at Pelican Rapids, North Dakota. Turkey Days was the townıs local carnival in which we saw a classic car show and got some great used books! We are still not sure what it has to do with turkeys, although we finally did see pelicans. As we hit Interstate 94 again, the wind was even more intense than the day before and our progress was slowed to 50 miles an hour. In Jamestown, ND, we went to the Buffalo Museum, saw the worldıs largest buffalo, and had the local delicacy of ³knephla.² If you can identify the etymology of this word, you win a jar of juneberry jam! Finally we started to make some progress!
But then near mile marker 67 a semi-trailer truck kicked up a giant piece of concrete from the road that spun towards us. Greg swerved the VW, but ran over it with the two passenger-side tires. The front right tire went flat, and we pulled over. The concrete block had bent the rims on both tires, but the back tire still seemed to be holding bead, so we changed the front tire and started to head toward Dickinson, ND, two miles away. Sarah had called AAA, but her phone had gone dead before we could finish the call. They said that they would be out to help in an hour. About a mile from Dickinson, the back tire lost bead and we pulled over to the side again — now with two flat tires! After waiting for about a half hour for AAA, we started to flag down passing cars, but no one would stop for a shaggy Greg. Finally a state trooper appeared, and, oddly enough, he had been called because of a call that a dog (Haku) had been tied to a post at the side of the road and the van had driven off! The trooper suggested that we find a hotel room in Dickinson, and that we deal with the VW from there. We piled into his car, with Haku curled up tight, and drove into town. However, not a hotel was to be found. It was the weekend of the North Dakota softball championship and all rooms were full. The trooper called a flat bed tow truck, and we all headed back out to the VW on the interstate. Soon the tow truck appeared, (letıs hear it for the ND state trooper!) and the VW was hauled onto the flat bed. The only place open was Walmart, so we headed to their automotive department. After much consultation amongst the different mechanics, the tow truck driver beat the rims back into shape. We purchased two new tires, and after 10 pm we drove to the Camp on the Heart campground and RV park for some much needed rest. Thanks to the mechanics in the automotive department at the Dickinson, ND Walmart, who worked late just to make sure we got on our way.
Caption: Sarah and Grey at Turkey Days. Why are we superheroes?
Caption: Grey riding Tractor Float in Jamestown, ND
Caption: Sarah contemplates ³Knephla.²
Caption: Grey and the worldıs largest buffalo statue
Caption: Storm a-brewing in quintessential ND
Capt ion: Changing flat tire in North Dakoa
Caption: Grey and Haku in ND trooperıs car
Caption: Van with two flats being pulled onto tow truck. (One had been replaced with a spare by Greg.)
Caption: Dusk gathers at the Dickinson, ND Walmart.