Monday, April 14, 2008

2007 Tour - Yellowstone to Flathead Lake, Montana

We stayed in West Yellowstone that night. Marcello stayed at the same place, and the next morning asked if we'd like to walk around town with him for a little while before we parted company. We agreed and together wandered through a number of the little shops. As we were on our way back to the hotel to check out and get our day started, Marcello said that he'd once been asked why he didn't have more friends. He said he'd told the guy that he didn't collect friends, he selected them. With that, he gave both Bobby and I rider's bells for our bikes. We weren't familiar with the tradition so he explained it to us. In short, evil road gremlins cause the problems that bikers face when riding motorcycles. A ringing bell near the front of the motorcycle keeps the gremlins from getting on the bike, and makes those who do get on, fall back off keeping the rider safe. The power of a bell is doubled when given as a gift to a true friend. The story, and the significance of being given these bells by a man we'd only known for a day was one of the most touching moments of our time on the road.

After we parted ways, Bobby and I headed out due West long enough to cross into Idaho, then came back and went North into Montana. Maybe it was just the weather that day, but the state certainly earned its nickname, Big Sky Country. We stopped in Missoula for me to get new tires on my bike, then went on to Poulin where spent the night overlooking Flat Head Lake.

No comments: