The part of Idaho
that I-90 cuts through is the tiny panhandle
at the top of the state. As you drive into Idaho from Montana
, you thank the Sweet Lord Above that you aren't driving during the winter - the road is ridiculously steep and winding, with at least four or five runaway truck turnouts. You've already passed the Continental Divide
, so you've got nowhere to go but down. And down you go.
Backtrack a bit. A little ways past Missoula
, a bird flew down in front of my car, and didn't fly back up. Birds have this habit of flying really low to the ground for some reason. And most of the time, you see they fly off in the distance behind you. But not this one. But the fact is, I've seen plenty of birds flying low, and I didn't hear a thump, and when I looked back, I didn't see any fresh roadkill
on the pavement
behind me, so I didn't think anything of it.
Fast forward to Idaho, about six hours or so later. I was supposed to meet my friend Chris there, but he was stopping at the Custer's Last Stand Monument, so he wasn't going to be there until nightfall. I got there in the late afternoon, checked into my lodgings, and then went to the
Silver Lake Mall to waste time. Now the whole time I was cruising around, people were looking at my car funny. I figured it was just because I have a Massachusetts license plate. Anyway, I come out of the mall, look at the front of my car, and I see what looks like a mint-condition stuffed magpie jammed snugly into my car right above the front bumper. When you take into account that the '92 Geo Prizm doesn't really have a place for a bird to get caught in, you can imagine how hard this bird was knocked around, and how deep it was wedged in, given that is was still sticking around six hours and countless sharp turns later. Chalk it up to the speed limit in Montana. Anyway, I took a softball bat out of the trunk and jimmied it loose. I'm sure the Silver Lake Mall clean-up crew disposed of the bird in a sanitary fashion, or at least sold it to a hungry foreigner.