This week I had to go to a work conference in a hotel/casino about three hours from my house.
While this wouldn’t be an issue for most people, in case you didn’t get the memo, I am not most people. I wasn’t kidding when I said that I was directionally challenged. My mom is convinced I should seek professional help in this area (because yes, mom, THIS is the area I should seek professional help for.)
He never even offered to drive. Not once.
So in my mind, the odds of me getting into the car by myself and successfully navigating my way across the state without ending up in Canada or a ditch are about as likely as me flapping my wings and soaring into the hotel convention center like an angel from above.
However, duty called, so I had no choice. Don’t worry though. I survived, and because I feel the need to overshare my accomplishment/prove to you that you are normal in comparison, I will let you into a bit of my day.
It actually started the night before when I had to rent a car and spent 10 minutes trying to figure out how to turn the windshield wipers off and plug the GPS unit in. Once that was established, I immediately found out the brakes were extremely touchy and managed to squirt breath spray directly into my eye.
Anyway, the next morning I loaded up the car, set the GPS—my first time ever using a GPS unit— and we hit the road. Here’s a quick rundown of my thoughts while on the trip:
- While I appreciated the GPS lady’s attention to detail, I did not need directions on how to get out of my driveway. However, five minutes after having this thought, I was already lost and she was “recalculating” the route. We were two miles from my house.
- Once the GPS lady—let’s call her Gail—assured me that we were “recalculated” and on the right highway, I settled in, meaning I obsessively checked the GPS every five seconds to make sure I was to stay on that highway for 75 miles.
- About 10 minutes in, I remembered that any time I’m on a road trip, I see every sign for every restaurant off every exit and immediately want to eat every second I’m in the car. While I brought food of my own, it never matters. To me, road trips = constantly wanting to eat.
- With Gail’s permission, I stopped at a rest stop to pee/eat my breakfast and saw a sign on the instant coffee machine that said, “NEVER drink this water. NEVER.” I did not drink the water.
- Once back on the road, the rest of the drive was uneventful, save for the fact that I forgot people in Detroit drive like maniacal freaks and that 90 mph is the new 70.
I snuck away at lunch to let Uncle June see the casino. What I presumed to be a homeless man gave me an odd look. Not sure what that means.
- While at the conference, the woman next to me was drinking OJ out of an espresso cup with her pinky in the air. I resisted the urge to ask her if she had any Grey Poupon.
- I was told I had outstanding ideas and was given the “gold star” for the day. There was no actual gold star, which I found disappointing and a bit misleading. However, some time later when they brought the idea back up and drew attention to me again, I was stuffing my face with snacks and unable to answer, so there was that.
- Needless to say, rock star status achieved.
- The drive home was rather uneventful as well, as Gail, Uncle June and I had some great conversations about the meaning of life, sang along to Kid Rock/Eminem in the spirit of Detroit and composed a brilliantly funny blog post about our adventures.
Unfortunately, all was forgotten by the time I sat down at my computer, so you get this. If someone could invent a GPS for keeping my thoughts in order, I would totally award them a gold star for the day.
As it is, I’m just glad someone invented GPS in general, or else I might still be circling the parking ramp of the hotel/casino, half blinded by peppermint breath spray and singing “Bawitdaba” at the top of my lungs in an effort to drown out Gail’s “recalculating” taunts.
OK. That might have happened anyway, but at least I made it home.
Gold star, indeed.