Angle to Key West: Fuel (10/8)

Lansing, Iowa – October 8, 2012

I stumbled out from underneath the highway bridge and walked to the gas station in Genoa, but they didn’t have any Heet, not a single yellow bottle to fuel my stove.

Same thing in De Soto, except I landed on a rocky beach and crossed a railroad track to get there. The town had two stores, but only blank stares and a bag of tortilla chips.

Lansing’s hardware store was out too. No Heet, no denatured alcohol, not even a potato chip consolation prize.

A day earlier, the store in Blackhawk Park closed before I got there. A day before that, I got lost in the marshes south of La Crosse and never got close to a gas station.

I walked down the street to Lansing’s second hardware store and opened the door. Past the Halloween decorations, beyond the season’s first artificial Christmas trees, on a lonely shelf near the back wall, I found the last quart of denatured alcohol and scooped it up.

It cost $7 and my excuse to peek into every town along the way, but I’m sure I can find another one of those somewhere.

One thought on “Angle to Key West: Fuel (10/8)

  1. Um, Um, Um! Especially when you are in cold weather and need something warm to drink or eat, having the stove is important. I know you laugh at me with my little tablets to burn, but it’s not a bad backup to have in your pocket!

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