The virtually flat road from Grand Coulee to Wilbur burns through 28 miles of outstretched farm land. Fresh timothy gently flutters and twists when the occasional eighteen wheeler loaded with hay, or fully trimmed pine logs, rumbles by me. The sun is high, breeze gentle and the humidity zero. I plug along effortlessly but my lips are brittle from four days soaking in the sun. The one water bottle I carry barely lubricates me as I comfortably complete a ten mile walking session.
Two tiny farm towns suddenly pop out of the lonely landscape. Each is blessed with a two block long Main Street, grain elevator, railroad siding and the omnipresent U.S. post office.
Wild Bill Goose Days
Wally, owner of the Alibi Restaurant tells me the story of Wild Bill. “Seems Bill, a founder of the town, got in an argument about a woman. Now Bill shot and killed the other fella but Bill took a fatal shot himself. The woman got wounded too. That’s how I heard this celebration got started.” Terry, older than me and wearing a Vietnam Veteran hat, tells me he comes to Wild Bill Days every year to run the 5 K race.