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July 15, 2010

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Letting Karma Find Its Course

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“Is anyone here sober” came the query as I shuffled back and forth toeing rocks and empty bottles out of my way looking for a spot for my tent.  The only response was laughter, they hadn’t been sober for days.  I already knew I wasn’t about to put up my tent, I was just acting busy waiting for the crowd to thin to find out who my neighbors would be.  In other words I had nothing better going on, “Yup, I am.  Stone cold sober.”

The questions were on full auto now.  “What, really?” “Why?” “Can you walk a straight line?”

“I’m sober, I’ve only been here an hour.”

“Can you drive” asked the brunette.

“Well I drove that motorcycle you’re standing next to here from Texas.”

The blonde this time, “Oh wait, that won’t work.  We’re drunk and were looking for someone to drive us and our truck to town.  You wouldn’t have a way to get back.”

“No I suppose not” I said wondering who would have had a way back.  Kyle, my latest provider, showed up then.  “I made you a burger.  It’s should still be warm” he said lifting the lid of the grill.  “Dude I love you!” I thought.

Random Concert Find

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Random Concert Find

 

Only three hours ago I’d rolled into town with my gas gauge on the 2nd stage of blinking low regretting not pulling into the campground I’d passed 40 miles back.  Now I was in a relatively large town, where sure I could get gas, but I knew that finding a camp was going to be a bitch.

I’d forgotten just how much a headwind affects the bike’s fuel econonmy not having

had one for a month.  Why did this one show up now?  The plan was to stop early,

get up early and spend all day in town getting the errands I’d been trying to do done for a change; change oil, laundry, hit up a Tim Hortons, and of course find wifi.

With a full gas tank the sign pointed left for the Alaska Highway.  At least I’ll be that much closer when I head out I thought making the turn with my eyes peeled for tent signs.  I’ll give it 8 miles before heading back I decided.  At mile 7.5 the sign appeared and down the dirt road I went reaching an intersection where the corner of my eye caught a sign saying Lyons Park.

WTF is this?  One old trailer without a truck by itself in a field, a mobile home off to the side with a swing set nearby, and 40 year old outhouses at the back.  You know I’m not too particular about where I sleep.  I’ll find a way to sleep on a brickpile if I have to, but this was sketchy.

I pulled in, parked, and did a 20 foot loop around my bike without seeing movement.  Good, that’s all the excuse I needed and was out of there.  Back to town to head south, the way I’d came in.  Worst case I’d seen a sign point to a camp 12 miles away that I wasn’t about to do with my tank low earlier.  Even better I came to a sign I’d missed that was only 3 miles away.

This time when I pulled in trailers and RVs were stacked on top of each other on a dirt/gravel field with hardly a soul in sight.  I made a short pass spotting a young couple next to a table full of booze.  “What’s going on here?”

“It’s the 3 day Bud Country Fever.  Jodi Messina is just about to go on.”

“Are the 3 days just starting or ending?”

“This is the last show.”

“What about the camping.  It looks like a free for all?”

“Well you have to have a pass, then you can camp where you want.  I don’t think they’ll be checking much on the last night.”  Exactly what I was thinking.  “Here wait, we’re leaving after the show, you can have our pass.”  I was already pulling in to park.  Before I had my helmet off Kyle’s girlfriend was coming over.  “We’ve got a spare ticket if you want to go watch the show.”  May as well, I’m here right?

Now Kyle had just completed the trificta; free camp, concert, and a burger.  On the 4th of July to boot!  Traveling kicks ass.  Inside the concert I’d actually wondered what the 3rd thing was going to be.  Good things come in 3s right?  That was right before a bird shat on my shoulder.  Finding a dime a minute later I decided to call those two even and stop testing karma.

Good things don’t have to stop at 3 though do they?  Not when you’re on a roll they don’t.  Kyle took off while his friends were staying another night.  We’re going to head to twon they said, help yourself to what’s in the cooler.  Sure enough there’s a cold MGD on the bottom to wash down my burger.  Thank God I ended up here.

Settling on a spot for my tent I unpacked it and opened the beer.  The blonde, Al, I learned was making her way back towards me.  I’d seen them bounce around to a couple other groups then go wait at their truck.  Maybe they hadn’t found a ride after all.  “Do you still think you could drive us?  Nobody else is sober.”  As car after car drove out.  “We’ll pay for a cab back and have beer back at our hotel.”

“Sure why not.  Let me set up my tent while it’s light out and I’ll come on over.”  It was 10 o’clock now, only an hour left of daylight.  Putting up the tent is second nature to me now so a few minutes later it was up with my bags inside to keep them hidden.

Al was still out scrounging up some plates of vegetarian food while I met Liz, the owner of the truck.  “I never drive anywhere after drinking and we’ve been at it all day.”  Good for you on both accounts.  “Thanks for doing this.  Think of all the good karma you’ll get”.

“Oh trust me, this isn’t paying it forward.  I’m so far ahead today I can’t catch up.”

I hadn’t been inside a vehicle since Utah and driven one other than my motorcycle in 10 weeks.  I quickly established that it would move better with the e-brake off to their amusement.  “Hey, at least I didn’t stall it did I?  We’re ok, I know what I’m doing.”

I’ve learned in the past that even if you are 100% sober getting directions from drunk people can make you look the same.  Slow and steady we went trading stories along the way.  “Thank you so much for driving.  Do you want to come up for a beer?”  I wasn’t saying no to that!


“What about the fireworks?”  Liz asked from the back as I parked.  “Can I light them off from the room?”

“No.”

“But we have a whole box, why not?  Can I at least bring them upstairs?”

“You can bring two of them. Small ones.”

“Yipee!”  Grabbing a roman candle and big one.

Yup, this was going to be an interesting evening.  And it was.  Al telling Liz every 5 minutes that she still couldn’t set off a firework from the room.  Taking 45 minutes to successfully order pizza.  Why was the line so busy at 11pm on Sunday anyway?

Listening to Al and Liz go back forth reminded me of being with my friend Daniel, whose wedding I’m going to in September, in so many ways.  They hadn’t seen each other for two years, but it was like hardly a day had passed.

We were all done for as my cab came and I discovered that it was raining.  So glad I put the tent up already.  Oh wait, I didn’t put the tarp over it!  It’s going to be soaked.  But it wasn’t 🙂  The last round of waterproofing spray must have done a lot of good.  I finally crashed out after putting in a 2nd day on top of the 1st back at the busy city park that karma led me to just 6 hours earlier.

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3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jul 16 2010

    Sounds like one hell of an adventure that you stumbled upon, and minus the bird poo incident all seemed like it went well.

    Reply
    • Jul 17 2010

      I certainly have no complaints 🙂 even with the bird poo.

      Reply
  2. Feb 11 2011

    I like the part about getting directions from drunk people Kind Regards

    Reply

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