Participation Award 

I imagine a few people may believe we’re somewhat prepared or know what we’re doing. Maybe we’re mechanically inclined. Why else would we think we could handle a monster truck and a house on wheels? Obviously something is missing from this story, right? NOPE. Forget any preconceived idea that we are “handy” people. The last few days have been full of lessons, or as my dad calls them “Leadership Opportunities”. When you’re standing on the side of the highway in nowhere Montana, covered in sweat and dirt holding your small child you don’t feel like a leader. It’s a cute thought though, thanks Dad. Day two started off as days typically do when you’re grossly confident people. We got up, feeling high and mighty after our successful first day. Look at us, we fixed a leaky sink last night, we rock! Let’s crush day two! We start cruisin’ with high hopes of making it to Billings, (spoiler alert, we do not). We left Twin Falls, Idaho nice and early. As we pull into Idaho Falls we notice our Truck has a notification that our brake lights aren’t working. Off to our second home, Camping World! After 2 hours of prying things apart and trying to replace the brake light on the fifth wheel, we realize the connection is actually a minor problem with our truck, super quick fix if you know what you are doing. As previously mentioned, we do not. Two hours behind, ok, we can stop in Livingston for the night. No problem, I have budgeted extra time for things like this. 

We get back on the road and make it to Montana. I jump in the back seat to feed the tiny human. This is an incredibly glamorous task, as you can see. Pumps attached I feel a BOOM. I look out the window and see part of our house flapping around and the remains of our tire. Oh great, I felt like 8 tires was excessive anyway. Thank goodness we are in the middle of nowhere. Husband handles the 7 legged beast like a champ and pulls us safely to the side of the highway. Alright, we have planned for this. We have roadside assistance just a phone call away. After an hour back and forth with the insurance company they inform us they are now searching for a tow company to come change our tire. An hour? Just to confirm our coverage. Thank goodness we weren’t stranded in the middle of nowhere with a baby on the highway, oh yea, we were. An hour and half later our tow company shows up. This is a rural Montana tow company, which means it’s two cowboys in a pickup. They could not have been nicer! Our NASCAR pit crew drove about 45 minutes just to get to us. They got our tire replaced and the side of the house taped up and sent us on our way. After 3 hours and only one meltdown (hint: it was not the baby nor the Husband) we were back on the road… for one whole mile. We found a Grocery/Laundromat /Candy Store/Gas Station/Post Office/ RV Park and decided to call it a day. 

Day 3: We woke up nice and early to really conquer the day. Apparently deciding that day 2 was just a fluke. Determined to make it to Billings today we set out. Success! We make it, find a great campsite and have our egos back in full force. We handled day two and came back stronger, ready for anything now. We’re like Rocky, in any of the 100 Rocky movies. ADRIAN! We decide to reward ourselves with hard cider and fish tacos at The Last Chance Pub in Billings. 

Day 4: Now off to Rapid City. It’s incredibly important to us that our 3 month old, who can’t see past 15 feet, sees Mt. Rushmore. We make it to Gillette, Wyoming and Husband asks me when Sturgis is. Not understanding that he is asking about the massive motorcycle rally, I look at the map and tell him it’s in about 90 miles. Total goob! “Uh, no, the motorcycle rally”. I don’t know, who cares… OH! Oopsie. A quick google reveals we are right in the middle of it. Driving our massive vehicle with a hundred blind spots. Who takes they’re maiden voyage in a house on wheels through the largest motorcycle rally in the country? These guys. Alright, we can do this. Our hometown has a huge rally every year, we know the rules. After a harrowing 2 hours we make it to our campsite. Thank goodness tiny human woke up just in time to serenade us with the music of her people the entire way. All totally worth it, she was very impressed with Mt. Rushmore. 

So why do we keep pushing on? Ah, because we are from the generation that received trophies for everything. We are just naturally great at all things we try. Everything we screw up is served in a positivity sandwich, hidden between all the things we actually do well so we can’t see our mistakes. This is what too much praise turns into people! Overly confident, naive morons. 

We’re just glad our child is young and cannot fully understand how little her parents know, we have to keep up appearances. 

I do want to note that we do take safety very seriously, even though it may not appear that way. We took lessons on how to drive our vehicle from my grandfather, the runner up in the Trucker Olympics (he was robbed of first place, politics). This experience, while hilarious, is truly making us better people. Everyday is something completely new, we are learning so much and loving every minute… even the tough minutes. 


5 thoughts on “Participation Award 

  1. Oh god. At least you are keeping your sense of humour. And hey, Tiny human will learn to be flexible emotionally, as well as the jealousy inducing ability to eat her own feet.

  2. Everyone always gets participation awards. Sometimes it’s a medal, or a ribbon, or small trophy. Sometimes it’s a slap on the back, or nod from the coach and ‘ good job ‘ or ‘good race ‘. Sometimes it’s a blown tire in Nowhere, Montana, or on a mountain pass.

    You’ll collect more…

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