Challenged, Directionally Speaking

Yes, I’m directionally challenged.

You can ask my family, ask my friends, but I’ll be the first to admit it.

Honestly, you’d think I’d have a better track record.

I’ve lived in the same area, on the same street, all my life.

Born in Elkton, Maryland, but a Delaware native, my family’s home is in the exurbs. While the areas surrounding my home have developed at an astonishing rate over the past decade, making McMansions with tiny yards the norm, many of the nearby roads have remained the same; in fact, the farm across the street from my family’s development remains unscathed by the changes, and we can still see the stars blinking in the night sky.

In light of so much staying the same, it really is pathetic that I don’t even know the roads surrounding my own home. Now don’t get me wrong – I know their names. I know that Dogtown Road, Green Giant Road, and Grears Corner Road are all in the very near vicinity. And I do know exactly where Strawberry Lane is, though that’s largely attributed to childhood trips to Mr. Zeh’s farm to pick the beloved aforementioned fruit. I also know Wiggins Mill Road, due to the pastoral house with the billy goats, and Noxontown Road, as the home of Saint Andrew’s School.

Still, it’s sad. Was it because my mom knew every back road and would alternate routes so often? Was it because, as the middle child, I rarely minded taking a backseat to my older sister? Was it because I was slightly near-sighted by fifth grade, blurring the road signs as I refused to wear my glasses for anything other than school? Or, most likely, was it because I preferred to let my mind wander when cruising along, taking in the sights without minding the locations?

Regardless of the cause, it’s a problem. I’ve had my license for five years now. Rather unfortunately, I drive all the time. I should probably learn to know where I’m going.

Now don’t get me wrong – I use MapQuest and GoogleMaps occasionally, as well. Every so often I’ll pull out an actual map; a rarity, certainly, mainly because I’d rather not have to refold the thing.

Still, I usually still obtain my best directions from the woman who bore me. She’ll effortlessly draw out a small map, walk me through it, and send me on my way; truly, the only hitch here for her is finding a pen that actually writes. And conveniently for me, she’s a map that talks back. Wait, is Penny Lane the one by the sub shop? And how many lights will I go through before I make that turn? Let’s face it – my mom’s the perfect GPS.

3 Responses to “Challenged, Directionally Speaking”
  1. Lisa Donovan says:

    Yep, your Mom is the perfect map….and I think your lack of direction is in the genes: I’m woefully dependent on my GPS and even have “him” named. Love you big, Janie! I love that you’re bloggin’ too…

  2. This is a hoot, Janie. I’ve never read anything quite like this, and I’ve read a whole lot!

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