Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Backroads, GPS, UPS and Me!

It was going to be a calm day, a typical day in which I was going to go look at a piece of real estate that I was to make a loan on. The land was in the northwest section of my territory. An area that most would say was in the "boonies". It was actually a great piece of hunting ground in the Ozarks of Arkansas.

I was to view the land at about noon - take about an hour and then move on to a loan closing that was in the southeast part of my territory. Needless to say, the shortcut method of getting from the "boonies" back to the civilized area for a loan closing seemed to be the best method. One in which it appeared it would be relatively easy to complete in the alloted time frame.

Well, to acomplish this task, I had along with me my trusty Garmin GPS. I had told it my route and expected nothing but perfection in traveling the backroads.

I left the boonies at about 1:00 pm about 15 minutes later than I attended. I set in motion the GPS tracking. It began to lead me like a pro to my final destination.

Or was it?

The paper map had indicated that I could have back traveled about 7 miles on the dirt road, taken a highway about 4 miles and then headed south on a fairly well traveled small highway for about 40 miles to my final destination.

But wait the trusty GPS idicated I could save a great deal of time by not back tracking but taking the dirt road only a few miles further down and soon hook up with a smaller highway that would eventually take me to my destination.

I took the trusty route of the GPS!

I drove and drove and drove on a rough secluded back country road. The GPS beeped to turn here and turn there.

But where is the highway I complained! I surely will get to it soon. Oh-Well! I am heading in the right direction. I have to get there eventually.

But why does it seem that I am probably traveling on a rough dirt road at about 10 miles an hour in a paralell line to the perceived highway - surely it is over there a mile or two.

Am I ever going to get there?

But wait! Up ahead! There are 3 four wheelers with hunters beside the road. I will stop and ask them to get any local directions. That seems best thing to do. Besides it seems that my trusty GPS might need a little help.

Slowing to a stop, I yell sir how are you today? Fine I guess he yelled back. Especially since someone has come along. Can you tell me how to get back to the nearest town. We seem to be in the middle of nowhere and we are lost.

Well, my heat skipped a beat. This is really good. I stop to get directions and my direction givers are lost. Dont Panic - Look in the rearview mirror! There is a vehicle with someone in it that knows how to get everywhere!

It is a UPS truck. Not wanting to look lost myself, I excused myself and said, He can surely give you good directions. Have a nice day!

My plan, as my heart beats rapidly, is to drive just ahead of the UPS truck and if there comes a fork in the road tha I dont understand I will pull off and let him proceed on and then follow. He will get me back to the real world.

A few miles up the road - there it is the dreaded fork in the road. I pull over and act like I am getting something out of my eye. My GPS says turn left! The UPS truck goes by and turns to the right!

What I yelled - Decisions to be made! By Golly I paid good money for this GPS and I am going to trust it. Lets go left.

My heart beats faster as the road grows smaller and rougher. The only house for miles has an old man sitting on the front porch. Is that a banjo in his hand! Did I hear dueling banjos! Are they just waiting for me?

Wait - that makes no sense. There are no communities within miles of here but yet there is a grave yard with several newly dug graves. Keep driving dont stop or I might be the next one in the hole.

Look another house! Two young men are sitting on the tailgate of an old rundown ford truck. Oh my goodness! There eyes are too close together and they give me a great big grin as I go by.

But wait! Maybe all is ok. The GPS finally indicates the main highway is just ahead. It is about time. It has been about 45 minutes since I split with the UPS truck. It has been a loong 45 Minutes.

Yes! There is the highway I was looking for. I knew my GPS would get me there! But wait. What is that up ahead. Looks like a small country cafe with a UPS truck in front of it.

It is the same UPS truck I saw 45 minutes ago. Look the driver is coming out of the Cafe picking his teeth. How could that be. Wait a minute. That is the road coming out over there that the UPS driver took at the fork in the road. And look, I can see where the other road that I took 45 minutes ago forked off! Just about a quarter of a mile down the road.

Thank you trusty GPS! Maybe I should give you to the UPS driver so that he can find his way home!


H.A.Page said...

The picture of the fraternal twins is one of my favorites. When I was in Ft. Worth in September my rent car was broken into and the GPS thing stolen. I prefer maps. It doesn't work well in N.M. for the same reason you had the problems.

Texas Red said...

There's a growing game in the United States that you play with a hand-held GPS. It's called geode catching, or something similar. You should look into it.