Monday, June 29, 2009

85 degrees and 70% humidity.

Here's what the ranch looks like now. I was just caught on my bicycle in a lightning storm about two days ago in the same place I took this photo.

What did I do? I (fortunately) was on the stretch that had cell reception, and just 30 seconds before called for help from Will. I had looked up at the sky before I left- "oh, clouds, not bad - in fact, beautiful" but 30 minutes later on my ride, they were suddenly dark and had that this-looks-bad kinda edge to them. Black and thick, I decided, hmm, I might make it, but I'll call for a pickup just in case... That was the one smart decision I made.

When I saw the first bolt hit the field about a mile or so away from me, I have to tell you, it was pretty shocking (no pun intended).
There is nothing in the world like realizing you are the highest point in the field, sitting on a piece of aluminum.

I laid my bike down on the road and ran 100 feet away for the drainage ditch, where I squatted for the longest 10 minutes of my life. No, there was no water in it.
At least when it started hailing, the lightning stopped.
Will showed up with a truck like a knight on a white horse. I think I became a member of every religion for about 20 minutes that day.

So, humbled and more educated on Montana thunderstorms, not 10 minutes later it was sunny and 85 degrees again.

The saying here on the ranch is, "If you don't like our weather, wait 15 minutes."
Yeah, I guess so.

Ok, other fun pics from the trip so far.
Here's Idaho:

And here are my friends in Bozeman, during the pizza-and-champagne evening we had. It also included PBR, never fear:

So that's what I've been up to. We also went to an airshow in Helena, MT - where we watched the Air Force Thunderbirds perform, and got to check out some cool helicopters and planes. The focus on the military here in Montana isn't too surprising; it seems like a lot of folks are middle-America Apple Pie, and a lot of the kids go into the Reserves.

That's Montana for now. Off to Glacier soon.

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