everyday is halloween
the corn maze at cool patch pumpkins
would it seem my silence here at really bad movies
as a lack. instead i've been having, all told with all the shit that had gone down that does not deserve a phrase, a blast. for instance, this weekend was filled with all sorts of halloween things.
let me start with the corn maze. located in dixon, california, a small farming community up the road some, is cool patch pumpkins. it has reportedly the world's largest and most difficult corn maze. that's no small boast. forthwith, anna, nick, b. c., j. and i went forward last night into the maze not knowing we would find our way out or in.
the maze is huge with four bridges each in a corner of the maze. the bridges act both as markers for passage and as rest stops on the journey. the maze is also immensely popular so that foot traffic is quite dense in certain passages. that is no matter for each person within the maze will get lost and will find himself or herself all alone in the corn.
we started like this. we paid our entrance fee and was given a map of the maze. the map is a dense figuration of passages with print so small superman himself would have difficulty deciphering it. we began our journey at dusk, a little after 6:00 pm. i am the father of a cub scout. i came prepared with a flashlight, bottled water and snacks. anna and c. each had their iPhones with a flashlight app. we stepped to the entrance, handed over our tickets and stepped into the corn.
the temperature fall immediately about 10 degrees. the corn was so high it felt as if you were in the lush rain forests of amazonia. and with map in hand we set out for the first bridge. we found the bridge with little difficulty. we hadn't had dinner yet so i broke into the snacks and shared them with the group. nick and j. were jabbering as boys are wont and the moon was large and orange. a halloween, gorgeous, kind of moon. finding the second bridge, forget it. we were lost. we also lost daylight. we couldn't read the map too well with our middle-aged eyes. the flashlight was only so strong. we made our way the best we could.
and then it happened. the flashlight quit working. batteries were dead. it was dark. the moon, full as it was, it's light couldn't penetrate thru the tall thick stalks of corn. we had the iPhones but even then those batteries would only last so long. we hooked up with another group who wore headlamps and knew how to read the maps. they were good. we followed them till the second bridge.
then we lost that group of professional spelunkers. we were on our own. b. is good with a map and he, and anna, got us pretty far into the maze. we went around in circles. we hooked up with another group who looked like they knew how to read it a map. then we lost them or they lost us. somehow we made it to the third bridge.
the dark had firmly settled. the corn was thick with fellow travelers. some passages were so narrow you wondered how a corn snake could get thru. anna's iPhone battery gave up the ghost. we were in the dark. totally until anna found nick's little microscope we bought him in nevada city the previous weekend. the microscope was equipped with a small light. a little later c. found at the bottom of her purse a little flashlight. light! again, light! we read the markers in the intersections of the passages and on the map as best we could. we heard lots of people whooping it up nearby. we knew were close the the fourth and final bridge.
we made it. we paused long enough on the bridge to look out into the corn. we could see in the far and near distance the flashes of light from other people's lamps and flashlights. they looked both near and remote. the image was spooky and yet oddly familiar.
we left the bridge made only one wrong turn and then we were out of the maze. i looked at my watch. 9:30 pm. our feet were achy and we were tired. but we have bragging rights that we made it thru the world's largest maze without having had the authorities use a helicopter to help us get out. a beautiful feeling it was. we walked back toward our cars with the sound of people still in the maze hollering and yelling from fear or pleasure, i don't know. for all i know some of those fellow travelers may still be lost in the corn and won't be found again until the farmers of cool patch pumpkins go to harvest the crop.