Ok, so there is a point to this story, so bear with me.
While I was living in Minnesota, Jeanette and I decided one hot summer night that we were to bored to stay home. She suggested that since we lived about an hour away from the Wisconsin border, we should jet over and then we could say that was one more state we'd been to. Well, Wisconsin might be a rip-roaring good time during the day, but a midnight, the sidewalks had been long since rolled up. And the only cheese we could find was in a gas station's snack section. Maybe it wasn't a good representation of Wisconsin cheese, because frankly, it sucked. We drove as far as Eau Claire, got there about three AM. The only thing interesting was that all the cute little antique shops. Like antiques shops everywhere, they had a bunch of stuff outside the shop, for lack of space or to draw people in, maybe. But unlike antique shops anywhere else I've been, they didn't bring it in at night. This is, incidentally, how the phrase "Wisconsin antiquing at night" came to mean "stealing" in Jeanette and my vernacular. More bad cheese, a good laugh and the trusting Midwestern mindset, then we were bored again. So when a guy at a gas station asked where we were headed, we said, "Depends. How long would it take to get to Canada?". This guy thought we were a little crazy (you'd think if anyone would understand what boredom does to your psyche, a man working nights at a gas station in rural Wisconsin would, but go figure) then he noticed the CA plates. Apparently that sorted things out for him, and he sold us a few maps.
So we headed north. In the early morning light, a very low level of fog clung to the ground, starting at about knee high, ending at about chin level. I know this because on a whim we pulled over and ran though a field, twirling and laughing like crazy, sleep deprived, fish out of water Californians that we were. But we quickly learned that fog is wet. Very wet. So we got back in the car, absolutely soaked from knee to chin.
At dawn, we crossed back into Minnesota at Lake Superior. It was one of the most beautiful sunrises I've ever seen in my life. We stopped at Duluth (I love to hear the natives say Duluth, they say it like, 'duh-looooooooth'.) at a Burger King, got some breakfast and headed on. It's important to note that for our hashbrowns we got a couple of those little wax paper cups with ketchup in them and set them in the cupholders. So by roughly nine thirty, where whipping down a two lane highway, about an hour away from Canada. For some unknown reason, the car suddenly begins to swerve, then roll. We ended up, still strapped in out seats upside down, staring at the shattered windshield and the grass. The car was upside down, but tilted toward the front hood. We undid out seat belts, fell to the roof of the car and then crawled out the broken back window. We had both had some bruises, but other than that we were fine. Some truck drivers stopped and thought we were in much worse shape then we were, because we were both streaked with ketchup. I tried to explain that it just ketchup, and they said that wasn't a funny joke while 'my friend was bleeding!'. Licking it off my own arm, and wiping a little off Jeanette's shoulder and eating it, just further convinced them that I was a psycho. Or maybe they reached that conclusion from the CA plates, now angled up on the upside-down car. Eventually they realized we weren't badly hurt, and left us with the tow-truck driver, walking away, shaking there heads. The tow truck driver offered to give us a lift to a town he said was a mile back down the highway. Since apparently taxis are unheard of in rural Minnesota, we agreed, although we sure didn't recall passing a town. But we learned that in that area, the terms 'town' and 'gas station' are interchangeable. So that is how we ended up in Cotton, Minnesota. Which consists of exactly two gas stations (sophisticated!), one diner (the sort of place you see in lifetime channel movies, where you can order a PB&J sandwich, which we did, and a unique little Scandinavian dish called a pastie, which we did not
order) and lastly, one little shop, slightly bigger than my cubicle, that sells books and soap. Jeanette used the truck driver's cell phone (roughly the size of my thigh) to call her husband Sam to come and get us, since there are no payphones in Cotton (too 'big city'). Since we were in for a long wait, we ate our sandwiches slowly, asked for a re-fill on our root beer. That being done, we had killed about a half an hour. Even with Sam skipping out little Wisconsin detour, we still had about five and half hours to wait. No use trying to chat up the locals, they seemed to think we
looked like something out of a lifetime channel movie. Apparently not many girls come through in tank tops smeared with dried blood/ketchup. So what to do beside head to the soap store. Well, those sweet little ladies didn't just offer us soap, they offered us a shower to use it in. We declined, too much kindness was weirding out our suspicious, worldly minds. But we bought plenty of soap and some books to read. When we finally got home to our own showers, we both became absolute devotees of Bug Creek soap. The lather is rich, the scent are lovely and just strong enough. Their soap is available on the internet, which is a much easier way to find it than mine and Jeanette's. I can't say enough good things about their soap. I especially recommend the Lake Superior Bay, the Northwoods Bay and the Lavender. Check out their website and if you order, mention Jeanette and Sarah, the car wreck castaways. Last time I checked, they still remember us.