31 July, 2009

Li'l Lost Sheepdog Caretaker

That would be moi.

For those who don't know, I drive very little. Since I work from home, I'm rarely out-and-about. The biggest trip each week is the half-hour drive from my home located just off the freeway to the USO at the airport located just off the freeway (real complicated, haha!). Other than that it's the bank, the grocery store, etc.

So, the very best birthday present I got this last week? A Garmin Nuvi.


Yes, I can get lost on the way to the bank, or the airport, or the salon, or... The joke is that when I lived in a small, Midwestern college town I could get lost driving down across town. Living in Phoenix after that was a dream come true, as almost all the streets were at right angles and so I could visualize the city layout even without a map in front of me.

But seriously, I can both read maps and decipher written directions very well, and I know the standard routes I take regularly. But I stress out about driving because I have no innate sense of direction or visual memory of where I've been. Then I start second-guessing myself, or take a wrong turn or miss an exit because I'm distracted and... I'm sunk.

I habitually allow myself at least 15 minutes' extra drive time to new locations, but even if I don't get lost at least a little bit (which is unusual), I still arrive stressed out from squinting at each road sign and wondering whether or not I reset the secondary odometer after the last turn and maybe I missed the first turn and should I be in the RH lane or does it merge into one lane and and was it supposed to be .2 or 1.2 miles before I turn, and... which street was I supposed to be looking for, again?

So, problem solved! Peace of mind.

And to think there are people out there who actually believe I'm smart... Boy do I have them fooled!