Where Am I?

November 30, 2011

I have the most awful sense of direction.  If you turn me around three times a block away from my house, I won’t know where I am.  A dear friend tried to make me feel better about my inability to find my way out of a paper bag so she told me about an article she read that said if you have a poor sense of direction, it means you have a nickel deficiency.  I’ve been using that excuse ever since.

Many years ago, I was the one who was doing the driving and I said to my companion, “We’re going on an adventure” and he said, “Does that mean we’re lost again?”  Busted!  Too bad I didn’t know about the nickel deficiency at that time.

Most people, when they have been somewhere, can find it again the next time.  I’m not one of those people.  I have to take the same route a dozen times before I can find it easily and if I haven’t been back for a few months, I get lost again.  People have often said that driving with me is an adventure.  I don’t think they mean it in a good way.

I once went on a road trip with a friend and the deal was that if I agreed to make this long trip by car, he would consent to make a stop in St. Augustine, FL, a place I had always wanted to visit.

Now, this friend should have known better than to hand me a map and tell me that I was to navigate.  He should have known better but either his memory had gone AWOL or he was living in hope that my sense of direction had improved since the last road trip.

We started out and we drove and drove and drove.  He kept asking, “How much longer?”and I kept saying, “Not much more.”  And we drove another hour.  Once again, he asked, “How much longer?” and once again, I said, “Not much longer.”

This went on for several more hours and he was getting exasperated and I was getting nervous because I really didn’t know where I was.  Finally, he let his exasperation come through loud and clear and when he asked again, “How much longer?” I looked at the map and said, “We’re only an inch away.”

A lot of years have passed since that time but a couple of years ago, this same friend called me and told me that he had just gotten a GPS navigator and he thought that I should get one because it’s so wonderful.  I ran right out and bought the same one that he bought.

I should have remembered that he has a fairly good sense of direction and I don’t, and that what works for him, doesn’t necessarily work for me.  But I’m the eternal optimist.

After eventually figuring out how to program my new GPS, I got in my car, confident that I would never get lost again.  The first thing that I discovered was that my GPS navigator was capable of getting lost as often as I do.

You think not??  In the last couple of years, I have experimented with my GPS and found that it often didn’t know north from south, east from west.  My navigator and I were running about the same odds; it was getting me lost almost as often as I was getting lost without it.

The year that I got my GPS, I had to go to my accountant’s office to have him prepare my tax return.  I drove around and around and around.  The navigator kept telling me that I was approaching his office but I couldn’t find it.  I finally had to call him and have him direct me there.

As I got to the last page of my expenses, I asked my accountant if I could take my new GPS navigator as a tax deduction.  He asked, “Is this the same GPS navigator you used to get here?”

I didn’t tell him about my nickel deficiency.

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