The drive to Medora was smooth as could be with little traffic, no breakdowns, and no animals jumping across the road (a tumbleweed did). Some changes have occurred since I left, mainly the removal of the big pink house I used to see out the bathroom window (replaced by a needed parking lot and apparently an underground geothermal heating element for the new construction across the street), the little white house that was a bakery (that was never open while I was here) and massive piles of construction stuff where the Rough Rider Hotel expansion is underway.
I made a run into Dickinson to visit the Queen City Barber Shop, a necessary stop for me; I was starting to look like Teen Wolf. I got groceries at Wal-Mart and spent too much even though I forgot shower spray. I contend that spending a little more now will level out the spending later on. It didn't help that I forgot to pack condiments before I left home. The guy working at Subway told me he ate a Subway sandwich "every day since I've been working here," which had been two years. I found that a little sad. Subway, while more appealing than a burger and fries most of the time, is nasty.
Mercifully, I am not alone in Medora as some of the summer staff is still around. OK, so that's only about two extra people. A group of us went to Golva, ND to the little bar there for Halloween. When Dan called the establishment on his phone in the car (it was our plan B), he asked them what was going on over there, to which came the reply we could all hear over the phone, "Waiting for you!" Sounds like a fun party, right? We vowed to make it a fun party.
Before last night, I couldn't have showed you where Golva was on a map. In fact, Google Maps doesn't even show a road going to Golva. "Golva" is pronounced "GAHL-vuh."
Well, we got there and it wasn't exactly a biker bar, which was what I was expecting. Instead there were only pickup trucks parked outside. There's a good sign as we roll up dressed as two goths, a gecko and a nature documentarian, and a guy from North Dakota. I was dressed up as the guy from North Dakota and was pretty sure I'd be the one getting beer bottles thrown at my head. Needless to say, everyone knew we were not from around there. We did not make asses of ourselves for at least the first 20 minutes.
While no one was there, we attacked the free chips and three kinds of homemade dip that were being served in unreasonably large bowls. I don't know why the bowls were so big; it would have been epic if everyone there would have finished off just one of the three goliath cauldrons of dip. After a couple Budweisers - the only beer they had - we went up and hit the karaoke machine. I thought we did alright. I sang "Folsom Prison Blues," and the owner thought I did a good job and handed me a list of songs to look at. I confessed I didn't even know the person who wrote and performed any of the songs and declined. No one got up and danced while I sang that one, nor when we shouted "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling," as a Top Gun-style duet, but they jumped up and danced when the owner/host/MC sang obscure country songs. Feeling first enthusiasm for our work, then shame, we continued to scour the songlist for some sort of comeback that we never settled on. No one else in Golva had the balls to go up there and sing. Maybe we were just that much better at singing and the locals didn't want to embarrass themselves. Maybe they just knew better.
People began to show up after a while: a cow and milk maid, Little Bo Peep (who I think got her costume at a Stripper Supply Outlet Store) and a black sheep, a witch who would cackle at an obnoxious volume quite often, and a host of people who looked like they just grabbed every wig/mask/weird shirt/accessory they had and threw them all together in a confusing mess. We got bored and left before the costume contest started. We were certain Jen's home-engineered (not just home-made) gecko costume would have won. She won in spirit.
Oh, and I made away with a free gift that was actually brought over to our table by one of the bartenders: a Golva Bar magnetic name and address fold-out thing, apparently for all the hordes of people I'd be meeting at the posh Golva Bar.