One for the road

A couple of months ago I decided to bite the bullet and buy a GPS for my new car.

I’d decided that I was going to get one a few years back after my husband and I went for a holiday to the other side of the country and hired one of these gadgets along with the hire car we were to get around in. To say that these little Navmans are marriage savers is an understatement. We arrived at our designated destinations on our tour in good time and good spirits. There were no arguments about maps, driving abilities, or shortcomings and everyone remained calm at all times, which was a miracle in itself when you consider the ramifications of two short-fuses in a confined space.

I’d pretty much put it on the backburner after that, because I rarely travel and I generally know my way around the local region, but when my mother suggested a trip down the coast,  I made a beeline for the nearest gadget store and purchased one.  My new Navman proved to be a valuable asset in getting me out of what could have been a mind-numbing exercise driving-around-in-circles-and-getting-nowhere all day. My mother was also impressed that I didn’t yell once and she didn’t have to white-knuckle a map for the entire trip.

I’d been itching for another chance to use it, and when we had to go across town into generally ‘unchartered territory’ recently to a funeral, I asked my husband if he would like to take the Navman along and test it out.

No, he said. And that was it. He said that he could find his way over there easily enough. He knew where he was going, he’d been that way before. I tried not to cringe and I weighed up the merit of sneaking it into my bag just in case, but decided against it. My husband could navigate ships around the world. Surely he knew what he was doing.

What my husband didn’t allow for was the passage of time. You can’t update an old memory the way that you can update a Navman online, that’s for sure. There were more new roads and highways post 10 years or so than you could poke a stick at. My husband drove head-on into the mayhem, determined not to admit that he was lost and that he might just need a little outside intervention at sometime in the preferably-near future.

Of course, by now the clock was ticking, and we were late, which made his decisions a little more erratic and unpredictable. I asked if I could go to the toilet and he looked at me like I was insane. I ‘suggested,’ while resisting the urge to swear at him, that he ask the service station attendant for directions while I use the amenities, therefore killing 2 birds with one stone. He conceded and I stopped crossing my legs.

We arrived at the church just in time to hear the last 10 minutes of the service and greet the relatives. Then he got lost again getting to the wake.

We have to go out again in two days to the west side of town to see an old aunt of his and celebrate her birthday.  I have never been there before in my life and he hasn’t been there for as long as I have known him, which is a long time.

I have already written down the address and stashed this and the Navman in my bag.


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