Boy, is Nevada a boring state to drive across. I’d forgotten just how monotonous it actually is. The scenery is really interesting for the first fifteen minutes. And then it never changes. Fortunately the speed limit’s 75, and there are some interesting towns to drive through if you leave the freeway.
Winnemucca was as exciting as ever. Lunch in Battle Mountain was a joy; imagine eating at McDonald’s not because you want to or because you’re trying to save money, but because THERE’S NOTHING ELSE THERE!
All this scenery and solitude and flat-out boredom gave me time to ponder many of my life’s mysteries and challenges, but discussion of that will have to wait.
As if to serve as a warning about the repression inherent to Utah, the speed limit inexplicably drops to 55 at the state line, and continues at this glacial pace for about ten miles of nonexistent road construction. A mild gas trauma greeted me as I hit Salt Lake City; I’ve never seen any city with so few gas stations on the outskirts. I was near panic, but I survived.
Once in the city, though, and once settled at Eric’s place, I began feeling more comfortable with the surroundings. This was a pretty big relief, as this was the first of many nights to come sleeping in the home of someone I’ve never met. Points to Eric for pulling off a potentially uncomfortable scenario and making me feel right at home.
Dinner at Bill and Nada’s Diner — a truly wonderful place with chicken-fried steak, chocolate cream pie and individual juke boxes at each table — was followed by a tour of neon Salt Lake by night and a couple of beers at the Deer Hunter, where disco never died.