A Spool of Blue Thread: A Novel by Anne Tyler:
Sawyer Road took so long to show up, he started worrying he had passed it. He could have sworn it was closer. He crossed to the other side of the pavement so he’d be sure not to miss it, although the other side was low-growth fields and he would be easier to spot there. He heard a fluttering overhead and then the hoot of an owl, which for some reason struck him as comforting.
Much, much later than he had expected, he came across the narrow pale band of Sawyer Road and he turned onto it. The gravel was vicious, but he had stopped bothering to mince as he walked. He trudged heavily, obstinately, taking a peculiar pleasure in the thought that the soles of his feet must be cut to ribbons.