As 5pm approached, Chris was itching to get moving. I sensed some very familiar, and foul vibes that began to stink of Michigan. He tried very hard to conceal his it, but a thespian he is not! I began to believe that re-visiting Spring was ill-advised. When Lynette invited me along to gather school supplies, I accepted. This was the last day I was there, we had a good moon to walk by, and besides: Chris was free to exert his sovereignty, and leave whenever he wanted. I silently refused to sacrifice precious time at Lynette's in order to accommodate his personal urgency to continue on. As always, there was no animosity involved, it just was matter of quietly saying, "In a hurry? Then...go." We had been here before.
The school supplies trip was short, and soon enough we were both packed, watered, and taking pictures in front of Casa de Fogg. Ben wanted to visit a friend in Star, so Lynette offered to drive us down US-20 for a 10-mile head start. Brad stayed behind, so I gave him a big hug, and as Lynette, Dave, Ben, Chris and I drove away the realization that this visit had ended and that I was back on the road settled in. The reality followed shortly at a rural intersection on Hwy. 20/26. Lynette echoed Mike's sentiments exactly when he had dropped us off in Battle Creek: "I feel weird just leaving you here!" We laughed at the deja vu, and assured her that she was just playing by the rules! Saying goodbye was tough, but light. Dave had an odd look on his face that I still haven't figured out, saying finally, "You two sure have some adventure in you." We all hugged, then as we crossed the road I watched the new family members drive off. I would miss Boise, but have some priceless memories, and will forever feel Bob Seger's "traces they left on my soul"...and I don't deal in melodrama!
I had yet to decide on a tactically specific course. Either way, the crossroad seemed to lie near the Oregon border in familiar territory. Fruitland, ID and Ontario, OR are places I had ventured through in 2008, and also relatively close to Chris' chosen US-20 that would take him toward Bend, OR. Neither of us knew rather anyone would stop for two apparent backpackers, so were very encouraged when, after 10-short minutes, we found ourselves in the back of a pickup heading to Caldwell, I-84, a Flying J, and a decision.