I think I’ve written a time or two about how directionally challenged I am and those who know me well, know I’d get lost in a small paper bag – even if someone is navigating for me! So, having a GPS has been a blessing for me – BIG TIME! But, even a GPS can’t save me from myself and my lack of an internal compass. I do much better now that I have one, but it would be even better if the lady inside the GPS would say things like: “turn towards your watch hand” (instead of “turn left”) or when I turn the wrong way, come back with “your OTHER right, dingbat”! But, that lady (no, I haven’t given her a name – I should, I suppose, we’ve become rather close friends) can be a little irritating, at times.
Case in point – I drove to Letchworth State Park yesterday (details of the day trip will be in a separate post) and used my GPS to help me get there. Letchworth is about an hour and a half drive from my home and I was meeting friends for lunch, so I didn’t want to get hopelessly lost and end up missing the outing. The first surprise was that I thought I remembered going to Letchworth by heading to Rochester and taking 390 south and going from there. But, both the GPS and mapquest took me through Batavia and over from there — a very pleasant rural drive — nice! Twice, I wasn’t paying much attention when she told me which way to turn and I turned the wrong way. The first time, she immediately directed me through three left turns to get me back on the original route and then told me to go the correct way – right, instead of left! We were back on track! The second time, there were no quick options for getting back in the right direction, so she started in with “when safe to do so, make a legal u-turn” and kept repeating it every few minutes until I found a driveway to turn around in! I said to her, “OK, already, shut up and give me a chance to do it!” Yes, I do talk back to her!
At one point, I saw something interesting and decided to turn around and go back for a closer look and to take a photo — after all, I left early enough to have plenty of time for a little exploring before lunch and it was my time to do with as I pleased – right? Wrong! She was not happy that I turned around and went into her rant about making a legal u-turn and getting back on track! She also didn’t like it when I went a little out-of-the-way to get a drink to take along on the drive, either. Which brings me to one of her little irritating habits. Sometimes, I know how to get to a general area and really only need her help when we get down to the nitty-gritty of the trip – getting to the specific final destination! If I decide to take a scenic route or a known shortcut or just a way I’m used to going and it isn’t the way SHE wants to go, she speaks up at every side road telling me to turn there to work our way to the road SHE wants me on! Bossy little booger, isn’t she? hehehe
Since it was a nice, leisurely drive, I did a lot of gawking around and daydreaming. I didn’t have the radio on, so it was quiet and peaceful. After driving some time on a long, straight road, she’d chime in with “turn right (or left, as the case may be) in 2 miles” and startle the crap out of me!!!! Jeez, she couldn’t give me a little warning before just talking out loud at me when I’m all alone in a quiet car? She never fails to startle me when I’m out driving and she speaks to me out of the blue! You’d think she’s know by now to do something to ease the shock a little!
But, the most confusing part of the drive came when I got in the general area of Letchworth. The park is HUGE and has three entrances. Apparently, the GPS signal for the restaurant I plugged in as my destination has a wide range to it. I was driving down a long country road with corn fields down one side and woods on the other and she kept telling me “you have arrived, destination on your left” — well, um, no – there was only WOODS on my left and nowhere to turn. She was adamant, though! She really wanted me to turn into the woods and rough it! Once I got past that section, she wanted me to make a legal u-turn and go back! I finally just turned her off and followed the signs to the nearest park entrance! I made it safe and sound and in plenty of time to wander around a little before the rest of my friends arrived for lunch.
One thing I’m thankful for with my GPS – it doesn’t say “recalculating” or “you have deviated from the planned route” whenever I get off track (deliberately or not) – that would drive me NUTS!!! She just politely (but, yes, sometimes irritatingly) tells me how to get back on track.
I love my GPS – little faults and all! I think I’ll call her “Sissy” – cause she’s the very helpful and sometimes irritating sister I never had! I don’t know what I’d do without her!