Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Still Lost...

I’ve been here in Denver for nearly 3 weeks now. At first I thought I would never learn my way around the city, now I know I won’t. Even with the help of my Verizon Virtual Navigator Lady (V.V.N.L.), I still get lost at least once a day.

I recently took a “short cut” to Wolf’s apartment and ended up in a parking lot behind a veterinary clinic. My V.V.N.L. said, in a voice that strongly hinted of sarcasm, “You are not on a real road, would you like to me to try to help you find one?”

Once when I turned right instead of left and ended up on a toll road, she said, “You have veered rather far off of your course, would you like me to recalculate your route?”

There is the inevitable “Make the next available, legal U-Turn” and of course one of my favorites; “Recalculating route”, followed by a deep sigh. And I think as she gets to know me, she is putting more and more detail into her directions. Instead of saying, “Turn right onto US 36 East” she says “You need to start thinking about turning right onto US 36 East, not West, in the next 4 miles”, followed by “Don’t forget you need to turn right pretty soon, and that’s a right, not a left”, and finally the inevitable “Hey stupid, are you in the right lane yet?”

All in all, though…I think things are improving, directionally speaking. Today, for example, was a landmark day. Yes, folks, I actually made it all of the way to the hospital without taking a wrong turn. Not once was I scolded by V.V.N.L., not once did I run someone off the road by trying to make a lane change and not once did someone honk their horn at me for being a nanosecond slow to move after the light changed. In fact, several people actually waved to me today, although I’d never have guessed there were so many people in Denver missing all their fingers except for the middle one.

24 comments:

Helen the Felon said...

Just remember that the mountains are West. That helps a whole lot. I've been pretty well screwed directionally since I moved away from Denver.

Mary said...

Do you know how funny you are? Was that an actual photo of someone flipping you the bird?

I was always told you are heading east to the sunrise, west to the sunset. But what happens at noon? Or if it's a cloudy day?

ThomasLB said...

I don't go anywhere without a handful of maps. It's tragic how easy it is for me to get lost.

I never wanted to move to Texas, I just haven't found my way home yet.

Anvilcloud said...

Maybe it's an age thing. Although I am not really directionally challenged, there are still areas in Ottawa that I have to look up every time.

Cuppa said...

I have no sense of direction whatsoever, so I really relate to this post. I have a hard enough time driving around in my own little neighbourhood let alone a strange city.
You are VERY brave to even try. Big "pat on the back" from me to you.

Within Without said...

Ha ha ha ha!!!

You could always return your navigational lady and exchange her for a navigational man (SLAP!)

Or hire a chauffeur...

Ur-spo said...

dear me
Getting lost in a strange city is upsetting but having an electronic gizmo talking to you would drive me barking mad.

Bonita said...

Golly, between bird-flippings and name-calling, what else has been great about your day? I'm amazed you've come through all this with your humor intact. But then, that's why you are probably getting through it. Great story!

mist1 said...

I almost threw my friend's GPS thingy out of the window. It kept saying "Recalculating, recalculating..."

Thailand Gal said...

I'm another who has absolutely no sense of direction. I can get lost in my own back yard.

And... is that a picture of someone giving you the finger or just a generic "somewhere out there on the internet" picture? :)


Peace,

~Chani

Pam said...

The guy giving you the bird looks a bit like my stepdaughter's hubby, lucky for him I know he's not in Denver! Such BAD manners!

Laurie said...

Helen, my son keeps telling me that as well. And it's good to know, but when I get behind those tall buildings and can't see the mountains, I'm pretty much screwed (as you say).

Mary, I don't even have the excuse that it is cloudy. It's been nice here for days and days. I'm just impaired.

Thomas, we must be cut from the same cloth...

AC, I wish that were the case, but I've been directionally challenged since my teenage years.

Cuppa, I am finally able to walk around the neighborhood (most of the time) without having to call for back-up or use the navigator to get home.

WW, at this point, I am getting rather tired of her voice, especially the sighing part. Maybe I should trade her off for one with a nice, sexy, deep male voice. Then I could call him my Verizon Virtual Navigator Hunk (VVNH). ;-)

Ur-spo, often times she is my only link to sanity (such as it is).

Laurie said...

Bonita, my daily antics make Cousin Dale laugh and keep his mind focused on things that are outside of his hospital room. And that, in turn, keeps me in good humor.

Mist, I have thought about that, but then I'd never make it to my destination...

Chani, I tried to take a picture with my cell phone, but it didn't turn out, so I found that one on the net.

Pam, it could be him, that pic is off the internet...

Gina said...

Ha! I had to laugh at "you are not on a real road." Nice to know you were on a fake one.

I'm lucky enough to be pretty good with directions.

Cathy said...

I so identify! Keith and I were trying to navigate Detroit Monday for his (ahem) catheter removal. So obviously we're under a little stress. Well. Our navigation lady was very patient - problem is: how do you exit on I 10 in a half mile when there are barriers and signs that say "road closed" ARGGGGH!

Our gal doesn't sigh - but I could hear her stifling a shriek when the semi-truck almost took off our front fender.

Thanks for the chuckles, Laurie - give Dale our best.

Homo Escapeons said...

Holy Cartography Batman!
Was that asshole flippin' you the bird a real picture that you took?
How rude!
To avoid such poor behavior I generally wear a prison uniform (replete with handcuffs dangling from my wrists)and scroll the word HATE into my forehead with a fork.
When a young Turk who imagines that I have trespassed upon his sole right to everything in the entire gawdam universe angrily races up to my side of the Van and sees the cuffs, uniform, message and blood trickling into my bulging 'crazy' eyes they generally slink back in their seat and gently apply the brakes.

You need the bumper sticker that reads
Keep Honking Asshole,
I'm Reloading..
oh yeah, and a map.

KGMom said...

Too too funny. You really are directionally challenged.
Have you named you gps device yet? We called ours Maggie. It helped so we could talk back to "her." My husband was really amused when I fought with Maggie. he was smart enough to put his money on me!

Laurie said...

Gina, you need to come be my chauffer, okay?

Cathy, my virtual navigator hasn't shrieked YET, so I've got that going for me. But I know how you feel, there have been several times that I've had to reroute because of construction and I swear you can hear in her voice that she's p*ssed...

HE, that sounds like a good idea. Except I don't think I'll carve anything into my forehead. Maybe a black marker?

KG, you are so right about my impairment. It's pretty serious. I just came back from giving blood and platelets and got lost going back to Dale's room (and it's only about 10 doors away). As for naming her...I have called her my navigor biotch a few times, does that count? ;-)

Courtney said...

It's stories like these that make me glad I've got a good sense of direction.

jen said...

oh, man...you crack me up. every single time.

Laurie said...

Courtney, so are you the one that got all of my directional sense? I would like some of it back, please...

Jen, I'm glad I made you smile. :-)

Shelley said...

Actually it could be much worse and you could end up in...*gasp* Canadia!

/ducks quick to dodge the Canuck fire

MsLittlePea said...

Oh My! Sounds like my everyday adventures. Except for the birdflippin' jerk.

Laurie said...

Shelley, I almost ended up in Canada once when I was driving from Billings, MT to Great Falls, MT. I swear to god when I stopped to ask directions, the fellow at the gas station said "eh".

Littlepea, I'm glad I'm not the only one who spends a good portion of the day lost...