I want to jump up and down, cheering about how excited I am to write about Montana!!! As far as being eventful, it wasn’t, but it was the day that Natalie and Jenny showed up. I felt like all of my problems were gone forever!!!!
We were parked under a giant pavillion, nice and shady! We were right next to the cute, little pool that he would be swimming in. Montana is so RIDICULOUSLY beautiful! We drive through it often, on our route to Canada. We also head through western Montana to get to places like Couer D’Alene and north-western states to do races. I love Montana so, so much!!! Smelling the fresh air, seeing the beautiful landscape, I just felt so happy!
If I remember corrected, the ambassadors for Montana stepped in at the last minute. They pulled together a pretty amazing day, and we were impressed! They even got an extra trailer for James and his mom to sleep in when they arrived (by flight way before the RV arrived). When we woke up in the morning, we were greeted by our friends!!! I felt sheer bliss! We then decided to wake James up. We were coming to the end of our journey, and wanted to make this a non-traditional wake-up.
We quietly entered the RV, then we jammed out to ‘Turn Down for What’ which James loves. We shook that trailer as much as we could! I am sure that my mother-in-law was surprised as well, but had to have been mildly amused. After much resistance, James finally forgave us and woke up. I think Natalie worked on him for a bit, and then we left as he got dressed for the swim.
We went out to the pool to scope things out. We were chatting with people and hanging out a bit. There were two dudes we talked to. I can’t remember their names, as one was a foreign name, but they stood out because of their height. They did most, if not all, of that day with James. We had a good time chatting with them, and the mood was great for the morning. All of us are friends, so now Casey is with us joking around, and we are just busting up, like good ol’ times!
There was a nice breakfast ready, as the kids woke up, we made our way to the table and filled our bellies. I remember 2-3 ladies there assisting with the food, and they had huge smiles and friendly voices! Last minute, they pulled this thing together….amazing!
James began the swim. I remember there being kids there, maybe some of the swim team. Charlotte Lawrence was experiencing another day of the 50, which was completely different than her first day. That is the irony, even though every day was monotonous, each day was completely different! He finished the swim and was off onto the bike.
I had lots of laundry to do, so Jenny McGregor Franson and Natalie Feher Rasmussen helped me gather my things and we got in their rental car to go to the laundromat. The kids went with Brytin and Evan; they went to the dollar store, and then they got pizza for lunch afterwards. Us girls laughed and talked at the laundromat. I professed my love for all of the washers and dryers, as Natalie laughed hysterically. I guess I was loopier than I realized. After just 90 min or so, we grabbed our stuff, and stopped for some lunch. Again, laughing the whole time; I had to have been KooKoo for Cocoa Puffs!!! I wished we could have just run away for the day, but then reality set in and we went back to the RV.
Upon our arrival, the Evan Ayers and Brytin Delanie Waterlyn had already gotten started with handling the shirt fiasco. All the shirts were out in the pavilion (in the shade!!!!!!), and they were sorting and figuring out orders. I am telling you, these two are freaking awesome! They were work horses the entire time they were with me. On top of working hard, they also were amazing with the kids. They are seriously so awesome, and I love them forever!
We spent the rest of the day hanging out there. James’ dad Al, and brother-in-law Brent, were in the area for a motorcycle rally, so they came by for a bit. Also his uncle Bob and his wife Donna were there to support us. They are super fans and were so excited that they could make it work to come and support James. They also love the kids and were excited to see them.
The energy of Montana was so happy and fun! Of course we were getting close to finishing, and having friends show up just made it magical. Something else made it magical, we surprised Casey Robles and his wife and kids showed up. This guys is 90% fun and games, and that other 10% can be serious when necessary. But within that 100% is a heart that is owned by his family!!! He loves his family so much, and when he saw them, he completely lost it, sobbed like a baby! We had enough help for the day, that he could enjoy his family.
It was time for the 5k. We had an awesome turn out, as well as James’ mom doing her 2nd 5k during the 50/50/50. We turned up the music, danced, rocked out and enjoyed the finish line of the 5k! We finally had permission to let our guard down, we were almost done with this crazy journey!!!
Shad was heading home. We planned for him to drive the trusty Mazda home. He made it to Idaho before the clutch went out, ha! He was stranded in Idaho; fortunately, he knew someone within 40 miles or so. They picked him up, and he spend the next day there, waiting for us to drive from WY to ID to pick him up. I guess we were lucky that the clutch didn’t go out during the 50 somewhere!!!
Everyone split up, getting in different cars, to drive to Jackson Hole, WY. We had more friends and Utah locals coming to meet us in WY. The drive was a bit longer, but we didn’t care, we were almost home. We listened to music and partied out until we had no more energy. We fell asleep, only to wake up many times in the night with the crazy driving.
I am sure that I didn’t fall asleep as deeply, thinking about the end. I had a lot of things to do when we got done with the 50/50/50. I needed to find a place to live and move. This could entail a lot of changes. I would need to clean out and return the RV to Indiana. And along with those huge tasks, all the things I wasn’t expecting. Oh…and James would be out of town during all of this.
I tried to keep my mind present, focus on the day at hand, as well as the finishing event. Our friend Tyrell, and I believe James English, (and whoever else behind the scenes) were organizing this big finish for us. There were calls back and forth all day, every day, trying to get it all organized. The finish party…it was just around the corner!