I met Sarge on his lunch break yesterday. For lunch. It felt quite decadent, eating at a restaurant in the middle of the afternoon, while not being on holiday.
I might not be on holiday, but I still don’t know where the hell I am half the time. Geographically/directionally speaking, of course. This isn’t because I’m new to the city. I lived in Glasgow for more than four years, in the same neighbourhood for nearly three of those, and I was just settling in when I decided to leave again.
I’ve always said, if I can’t see it from my house, I don’t know where it is. I have an idea, but I don’t really know. It doesn’t help if I’ve been there before, or even if it’s my house. If someone needs directions, I get someone else to give them. If I give directions, and the person doesn’t get lost, I’m pleased with myself for three whole days. And I call it a fluke.
When someone tells me where something is, starts in with ‘Left here, right there…’ my brain fries a little. I have to feel for the writer’s bump on my right hand, in order to figure out left and right. Sometimes I have to actually look at my hands. Which I’m sure is a curious sight. Taking the wrong turn has meant I go in actual circles, back where I started. Like that one time where I went around the block only to discover that where I wanted to be was across the street from my flat. That was a fun day.
People say it’s because I don’t drive (a car). I think it’s the reason I don’t.
When I travel around places that aren’t my own damn city, I am never The One With The Map. I’m sure I’ve lost friends, because people have counted on me to know where we’re going. I haven’t actually lost people, I should say. Although one or two have stopped speaking to me.
Other people think it’s cute, and I have added it to my list of personal quirks and joke about it as much as possible.
A few weeks ago, I renewed my mobile phone contract, and got an iPhone for free. I didn’t really want one, and I wasn’t going to get one. But it just appeared. And even I can forget my morals for GPS.
I used it yesterday, to get to lunch. I should mention that the restaurant is two blocks away from my flat. But getting there involved lefts and rights, and so I followed the little blue dot on the map. I was with my PA, and I even said to her at one point: Oh, look! The dot is MOVING. (Remember ‘Follow the bouncing ball’? It was like that. Only it wasn’t.)
I got there, with unfried brains. Thank you, iPhone.
And now, I’m going out and getting (not) lost. Again.