Gee, Dad Found His Own Way In The Outback
See, it’s perfectly logical. I used to get lost. Not because I am a bad driver, but simply because my aptitude for navigation does not always, ahem, match my driving skills.
So when Mrs Authorblog presented me with a GPS last year, the gods in every religious pantheon breathed a sigh of relief and said: "Right, we don’t need to worry about him getting lost – ever again. "
The GPS was great fun. I hooked it up even if we were driving to the shops, just for the novelty of hearing a disembodied voice actually telling me when to turn, which direction to turn, and how long it would be before my next cross-street. I reckoned I had found Nirvana.
When we flew interstate in January this year, it was the first thing I packed. As soon as we stepped off the plane in Perth, capital of Western Australia, I proudly marched up to the rental car desk, claimed my big Camry, opened the driver’s door in the sweltering heat and even before I turned the aircon on, I connected the GPS and put in the co-ordinates for the Sheraton.
Piece of cake. Never been to Perth before, but I drove with as much confidence as locals who had spent all their lives there.
But a couple of weeks later, I blotted my copybook. Just when the family figured I would never get lost again, I did. Yes, the GPS was operating and I turned left when it told me to turn right. You could just about hear the GPS clicking its imaginary tongue and intoning gravely: "This bloke’s a moron. "
But I recently drove a 1200-kilometre round trip up the bush, into neighbouring New South Wales, to the beautiful little Riverina town of Temora. I was on my own, without the family for the first time in clan history, because it was just a quick in-and-out trip for research purposes. But I reckon Mrs Authorblog and the Authorbloglets were placing wagers on how soon it would take me to get lost.
I left on schedule, arrived at my destination on schedule, drove around the town without any dramas and then drove back to Melbourne on schedule. No big deal?
Mate, I did it all without the GPS. Yes, I had it with me in the car, but I never once turned it on.
Just one word of warning. Next time you see me, don’t tell me "Get lost" – because I probably will, literally and metaphorically.
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