It has been a dream and still is my dream to live and love in Australia. As some of you may know I had purchased a plane ticket for the 11th of september to fly from Seattle to Sydney where I could then buy a car and figure things out from there. By flying out of Seattle I could save 200+ on airfare and I could visit a new city; all I had to do was get from Denver to Seattle.I started the trip by finding a Craigslist rideshare to Bozeman Montana with an older guy that was heading back to school. He was great to talk with and we got to know each other well enough that I feel like texting him right now to see how he is doing. Anyways, on the first night of my trip I was able to get to the Bozeman hot springs. I spend the evening talking with mostly college freshman and soaking in the hot water. After the hot spring it was time to look for a camp spot. I do not like paying for a place to sleep, ever, and so I will usually just pitch a hammock between two trees that are secluded enough to not get woken up by anyone in the morning. This night was different. Behind the hot springs I found an abandoned camper truck, unlocked, and ready to be slept in with mattress and all. I must admit there was some old old chicken in the sink and junk on the floor, but the mattress was clean and I was able to lock the door and thus got a fairly fucking decent night of sleep.
The next morning I woke up with the sun, put my large pack on my back, my small pack on my front and started hiking to the highway by which I could throw up the thumb. It’s a 200 mile journey from the hot springs to Missoula. It took me three rides and most of the day to make the trip. The first guy picked me up on the side of the road and sent me off about three miles down the road. The second ride was with a lady that made her daughter sit in the back so that she could give me a ride a few more miles down the road. Sweet of her to be able to trust a hitch hiker even with her children present. The third ride got me to the Missoula off ramp and was with one of the more interesting persons that I have met in a long time. The guy looked like he was in his early thirties but turned out to be ott 45. He was driving from South Carolina to go camping with a few friends in Idaho. He told me of his train hopping days that lasted from a mid teen all the way through his mid thirties. Through dumpster diving and knowledge of the forest he was able to go for years without needing money of any kind. He was able to cross the American borders without a passport. Now he has his “sweety” and a son that he is raising on a farm/commune in SC. When he dropped me off in Missoula I thanked him for his stories and the ride
In Missoula I was able to meet up with an old friend who gave me a place to sleep, a shower, and endless conversation. Missoula this time of year is smoked out by forest fire to the point of not being able to see the sun. Breathing in the air makes it feel as if you’re coming down with a hard sickness and I had to leave.
For the last part of my trip I decided to take the night bus. It would get me to downtown Seattle and I could sleep for the entire ride there. I remember talking with a lady during one of our stops. We got into chit chat and I learned that this was a lady in a terrible place. She had drug problems and was being taken away from her kids. I told her, at least it can’t get any worse. She said- I beg to differ. At the next rest station it’s something like 3 in the morning and the entire bus is emptied into some random bus station. We are zombies when I hear some shouting and see an old guy get slashed in the face with a knife. The culprit dominates the bus station brandishing the knife shouting about injustice for about three minutes before an officer shows up with a fully automatic weapon and the man is put to the ground in cuffs. I see the lady I had talked with earlier who whispers- still think this day can’t get any worse. Little did I know at the time that my day was to get a whole lot worse.
The next rest station it must be something like 4 in the morning when they make us get off the bus again so that we can fill up on gas. I am half asleep when they announce that its time to get back on the bus. What I think I hear is that it’s time to get back on a bus that’s not my bus and so I stay where I am, half asleep. Minutes later I realize that my bus has left without me. I call Greyhound and they tell me that I can wait where I am at for the next bus which comes in 12 hours. I spend the rest of the night asking people if they are going to Seattle and getting what sleep can be got out of gas station bench. I end up buying a new bus ticket with a different bus company the rest of the way to Seattle.
I get to Seattle. First thing that hits me is how beautiful the stone buildings next to the water look. It strangely reminds me of St. Paul. I go to the Greyhound bus station where they give me my large pack that was checked under the bus. No one can find the smaller pack that I had carried on with me when I boarded the bus. I go through the blurry ass camera footage to see something that looks like what might be someone walking away with my pack. They tell me that Greyhound is not responsible for carry ons shoe me out the door. It’s Friday, my plane leaves on Monday; my passport, drivers license, birth certificate, and social security card were all in the pack. I’m fucked. Expedited passports are about 500 which is too much for me to spend and then expect to make a responsible start in Australia. It looks as if I will be staying in Seattle for a while.
Putting the large pack on my back I head to the pedicab garage downtown. On the way to the garage I meet two guys who are working on a school bus. They yell some sort of nonsense at me through the window and invite me aboard. Inside is covered with tools and supplies by which these guys are flooring it out so that they live in style and avoid paying rent. They give me a beer and we smoke some weed. The one guy works at the same cab company that I plan on working for. He lets me sleep on the bus with him that night and then in the back of this truck the following night. Over the weekend I make money and friends on the rickshaw. Looking to buy a subaru later today by which I can live, love, and save up some money for a trip to Australia. It’s a definite setback but I really do love my life. Seattle is beautiful and now I have time to explore. Today I interview for bartender and then will jump on the cab to get some exploring in. I currently don’t have any identification but have not yet been carded even though I frequent the bars in town. Looking forward to the Seattle jungle and have plans to visit the forest with another forest dwelling creature from Minnesota. Starting fresh in a new city is one of my favorite things to do. I feel like a baby on a mission. Everything is so new and there is so much to do. Now, it’s time to build.