The leaves crunched under my boots as I made my way further and further into the clearing. Kinney, Minnesota is not for the faint of heart. I wiggled my toes around inside my too-big wool socks, in an attempt to generate some extra warmth. The wind bit into my exposed neck, and for the third time since I’d been outside today, I wished I’d listened to John and wore a scarf. Instead, I had an old Pentax hung around my neck, with no film. In my haste to leave the motel before the sun was tucked completely behind the horizon, I’d left the mass of wool draped over the baseboard radiator, its home for the rest of the night. I hastily clomped through the parking lot full of tailgaters, head down, knowing full-well they were watching my bony ass make its way to the beat-up Galant at the end of the lot. Passing through signs off the highway advertising adult fun stores next to Metropolitan United Church’s Teleministry provided an oddly comforting sort of backdrop to my drive. Gotta love small-town America. 1 freeway and 3 stoplights later, I was stuck outside in the cold after driving for 45 minutes, and I would have nothing to show for it at the end of the night. I sighed, but there was no point in going back now. Glancing at the clock on the dash, I scanned the area for anybody else. T-minus 30 minutes and counting.
Please God, don’t let me die in the middle of nowhere.