Saturday, June 30, 2007

The Wild West

Our coffee and eggs were served with a heap of Western culture today in Burns, Or. Our hostess (her first day on the job) rubbed her arms and shared that she was sore from "bucking up hay bales" with her mom the day before. (Translation: She was hurling hay bales into the back of a pick-up truck). Then, our waitress nodded toward a female biker and said, "I prefer my transportation with four hooves." Lots of horses and hay in Oregon. And then there's the shoe tree.

PHOTO: Oregon's shoe tree sprouts mostly sneakers and a few flip-flops. Discarded socks lounge nearby. The little girl belongs to a local who has watched the tree sprout since last year.

The tree is along a dramatic stretch of Route 20 (between mile markers 206 and 207) and draws lots of locals, who, like most people familiar with this phenomenon, know nothing about who is doing it or why. It's just fun. (

PHOTO: The Boise capitol building rises inside a busy downtown.

Once in Idaho, we stopped in Boise to give our doggies a needed break from riding in Otto. We couldn't find a promised dog park on a military reserve-turned-recreation park.

PHOTO: Jacob inside a Civil War cemetery in Boise.

Instead, we visited a Civil War cemetery, where the guys tried to run around, but were waylaid by the 92-degree temperature.

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