Wednesday June 24: Rest Day in Missoula!!

It rains every other 20 minutes here, but it's a *nice* rain...

Today we walked along a self-guided path among the historical landmarks of Missoula -- not the buildings themselves but plaques which describe the various areas, buildings, rivers, and history of the town. After dropping our bikes off at the Big Sky bicycle shop for some wheel truing and re-lubing, and a quick mocha for us, we hiked back to the university and started on the path. We crossed the Higgins Bridge into downtown for the "Out to Lunch" music and food festival, a weekly happening which really gets a lot of locals out every wednesday for socializing and food-tasting and general relaxation. We then got a couple of other things for the camping (citronella bug spray, a better bathroom-stuff bag for me, a headlamp for reading in the tent, and those folding thermarest-type chairs for days when there just aren't enough chairs for everyone) at a local outdoors store, wandered past the travelling Smithsonian Artrain, actually mailed some postcards to my old work group, took pictues of the Missoula Courthouse building and a street-eater. Then we finished the historical path, and got curbside shakes at the Big Dipper ice cream store while we rested our feet. Stairs are really hard to climb at this point -- we tire quickly, even though we can still pedal very well. It's muscle motion we haven't programmed in, I guess. Walked back to the dorms, and started editing day6-day10 while waiting for bikes to be finished. Around 6:30pm we went over to Big Sky and picked them up (they then added some nice soft foam stuff to my handlebars in my primary grip), rode them back in the rain, did 2 more loads of laundry, got pizza and soda for dinner, finished editing these pages (10:25pm), and packed up for an early start tomorrow -- we hear it'll be a 100+ mile day.

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