In mid-month we set out for Maine, leaving Montana as parched as it has ever been in July, the rivers too warm to fish.
We took with us our ice skates and our winter clothes, two bicycles, a turkey call, and a circular saw. Also our noisy, bent-tailed cat, fresh off the plane from China, who had become very much attached to Montana after just a few weeks of mouse hunting in our ungrazed pasture. He mourns his loss daily, hours of low- and high-pitched keening, which reverberates from the car windows like the sufferings of souls in hell.
The warm weather limits our visits to parks, diners, and other roadside attractions, because it is too hot to leave the cat in the car. But we drove through Yellowstone from west to east, and made a quick tour of the boardwalks that surround Fountain Paint Pots and Clepsydra Geyser, where I once taught a writing workshop as the Moran artist-in-residence.
For dinner along Interstate 90, we can recommend the Winchester in Buffalo, Wyoming (117 Highway 16 East, 307-684-8636), which offers good steak dinners and an iconic chicken pot pie, and warn against Emiliano’s in Appleton, Wisconsin (3025 West College Avenue, 920-739-6186), where the linguine was overcooked, the pizza bland, and the salt shaker must have fallen into the lasagna.