The patch, down the street from where we live, is a made-over parking lot. It's been disguised with warped pumpkins that look sad and deformed, or just bored. There's a few haystacks with too-scary monsters standing all around. One of the creeper's eyes pop out as you walk by. The head of another one spins around as you approach. And the worst one is just a sheet-covered body that screams and has a bloody neck and a head in its hand.
As I walked through, Sabine kept saying, "Yet's go, mama." I looked down and saw her head turned into the side of the stroller with her eyes squeezed tightly shut and her fingers clutching the sides of her ride. She was terrified. She's rarely terrified.
As I headed toward the exit, a toothless woman, whose visage was just as deflated and nicked up as the pumpkins, approached us. She had a bad dye job, dirty clothes and seemed miles away from sober. It was 9:30 a.m. She'd come out of a broken-down trailer in the corner, where her shirtless partner was standing, smoking a cigarette and spitting. He was also seriously lacking in teeth.
When did people who run pumpkin patches start living at the pumpkin patch?
I convinced myself that the pumpkin patch couple was brewing up batches of crystal meth in their clunky, brown trailer. The pumpkins were a cover for their chemist, cracked out ways, and what they really do is tie up and torture little children and their unsuspecting mothers a la Deliverance. I was suddenly just as freaked out as Sabine.
Maybe next year we'll drive somewhere to a pumpkin patch that has hay rides, apple trees, scarecrows with happy faces--and people with teeth. For now, we'll go ahead and pick up a pumpkin or two at the grocery store, where Sabine exists as the only terror.