Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hillsboro, ND

I’m here in the beet harvest rendezvous town. I met Jim at a trailer that’s set up in a gas station parking lot. The harvest starts on October 1st, but I was told to be here today.  I filled out the paperwork, and watched the training video.  I’ll try to avoid being killed in machinery or sued for harassment.  This town is small and boring, and I don’t mean it lightly.
Here’s what I’m working with:
[Photo lost to time...]

At 721, things were looking up. I was feeling fortunate. I saw some grungy looking kids walking down the street and gawked in their direction a couple of times. I parked at the gas station, and they ended up loitering in about the same place I was planning on standing around. “So… you guys doing the beet harvest?” That got the ball rolling.
We’re all doing the beet harvest. They got here yesterday, and they’re spending the whole fucking week wandering around and sleeping under a bridge next to the park where they get chewed up by mosquitoes. We talked for a good long time. I showed them my van. We sat around inside my house escaping a surprise rain storm and talking about bullshit for a long time. Couple hours. I gave them my phone number and a ride back to the bridge. Now I’m fucking around on the internet for the 1000th time today.
It’s getting pretty strange out here. I was having a lousy lazy drawn-out day. I tried to recoup some of the sleep that I wasn’t able to get last night. There is no way I am going to cave in and drink so soon, but I have got to say that this is a really tough place to quit. I’m wasting a week in a tiny mid-west town. Maybe I’ll head down to Fargo. “The hub of excitement.”

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