Travel Writing
Charlotte Rains Dixon  

Trust Versus Foolishness


Two experiences with the GPS system in my rental car:

1. I'm driving to Nashville on Friday night to pick up a friend at her condo and go to dinner.  Gertie, which is what I've named my GPS, tells me to take a freeway route that does not look at all familiar to me.  But, I figure, it is important to trust Gertie.  After all, she has the satellite hook-up, not me, right?  And it is good to trust in general. So I take a deep breath, follow her instructions and arrive at my friend's front door easily and quickly.  Gertie success.

2. The next night, I'm going to a different friend's condo, also in Nashville.  I give Gertie the address, and off we go.  Again she tells me to take an odd exit.  But, based on my experience of the previous evening, I decide to follow it.  After about 10 minutes, it occurs to me that I am lost.  Well, not lost exactly, but way far away from where I was supposed to be.  And so late for drinks with my friend that we had to cancel.  All was not lost, however, as I drove straight to the bar at J. Alexander's to watch the mighty Oregon Ducks stomp University of Tennessee, even though I actually had to resort to texted updates from my son, seeing as how LSU fans had taken over the bar to watch the LSU-Vanderbilt game.  Why, when the game itself was being played in a stadium not 100 feet away, was beyond me.  Despite all this, we must rack this up as a Gertie fail.

So, the question is, to trust or rely on one's own experience?  In the past, I've hated using GPS systems because I have felt better about relying on my own knowledge.  (And, one might say, because I have a control-freak streak.)  But this time I'm going to so many different places on my own I've decided to indulge in a bit of trust.  With decidedly mixed results, no? When does blindly relying on the GPS system become foolishness?

When do you trust and when does knowledge override that trust?  I don't have the answer.  I'm not even sure how it relates to writing to be honest.  But I can't wait to see what you guys think.

Photo by dirkjan72 from Flickr, via Everystockphoto.

0 thoughts on “Trust Versus Foolishness

  1. Christi Corbett

    I too have no answer…but your experience reminds me of my favorite show “The Office”.

    There is an episode where Michael and Dwight are driving somewhere and the GPS tells them to turn right. Dwight protests, but Michael ignores him in favor of the kindly GPS system and promptly turns the car down a boat ramp and into a lake.

    Christi Corbett

  2. Charlotte Dixon

    Christi, I’ve not seen that episode but it sounds hilarious, and very familiar!

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