Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

A muddy shoe ban in Morgan July 24, 2013

YOU BEST NOT ENTER the Shell convenience store/gas station in Morgan with muddy shoes. I never checked my flip flops nor the floor upon entering. My initial focus was finding the bathroom in Wayne’s C-Store, as it’s known by locals.

Posted on doors of the Shell station in Morgan.

Posted on doors of the Shell station in Morgan.

Only afterward did I ponder the message and wonder how many times staff has dealt with mud trekked inside this retail hub in this rural southwestern Minnesota community. Often enough, apparently, given the postings on the two front doors.

A view right outside the Shell station.

A view right outside the Shell station.

My husband and I had just driven about 100 miles, more than an hour of that in rain. But, unless our soles acquired mud while walking from our gravel parking space into the store, they should have been clean.

A rural-themed mural on the side of Wayne's C-Store.

A rural-themed mural on the side of Wayne’s C-Store.

After photographing the NO MUDDY SHOES ALLOWED! sign and the mural on the side of the convenience store, I swung my camera around to photograph Harvest Land Cooperative across the street.

A snippet of the Harvest Land Co-op complex across the highway from the Shell station.

A snippet of the Harvest Land Co-op complex across the highway from the Shell station.

There’s something about an elevator that always causes me to pause and reflect on my rural Minnesota prairie roots.

The hatchery is closed.

The hatchery is closed.

From there I skirted vehicles parked alongside the Shell station and dodged puddles to photograph signage on the next door old Morgan Hatchery.

A side view of the former hatchery.

A side view of the former hatchery.

At that point I likely muddied my flip flops. But that was just fine. I wasn’t returning to the NO MUDDY SHOES ALLOWED! store.

© Copyright 2013 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Advertisements