I take comfort in seeing robins. They carry about with their little habits and chores as they do in my parents backyard. As regions change, so do the birds. The robins however have remained, and I hope they continue to. Robins have been something familiar to grasp onto.
Small towns are beginning to feel like this as well. Not to discredit the uniqueness and history of each and every town we roll through and fill up our water bottles, but they begin to resemble one another. This is comforting in its own right. Something to rely on, a little taste of civilization. As much as we like to appear "unplugged" or rugged, there's great comfort in a mom and pop shop with Snickers and air conditioning.
We slept in Dupuyer, MT on the 15th of July. Dupuyer has a small store, robins, and grizzlies. We slept next to a small creek that was just deep enough to dunk your whole body in if you were okay with you bare butt touching the bottom. Though I had a small store and robins, the threat of grizzlies robbed me of some of my comfort that night, I'm a city boy after all.
We made it through the night and had a fire in the morning. Yet another late start. The road begin to stretch out and we really started to see the vastness of Montana. We ran into a band of horses on the road and watched them for 15 minutes or so as an old farmer tried to corral them back into the fence they escaped from. The horses bobbed and mocked him, only going through the gate when they were ready. We listened to "Wild Horses" by the Rolling Stones as we watched. We road on with smiles on our faces and a song in our heads.
We slept in Fairfield, MT in the annex of a church. We had a full kitchen to cook in and couches to sleep on. We really lived!