Sunday, October 01, 2006

Last night, I talked with my dear friend W long into the night, as we both channel surfed since the game of her alma mater was inexplicably not on television. Today, we did get to enjoy the second half of the Dallas Cowboys game together, savoring the strong play and eventual win.

I missed the first half because I had gone to have lunch with my step-mother and father at one of their favorite restaurants. I missed the first half not because I was still eating, but because I got lost on the way home. When I set out on my way to the restaurant, it was with some misgivings since I knew I would be traveling the beltway. I did miss the exit since the entrance ramp was a separate entrance that broke off of the highway at least a mile from the actual exit. I was able to take the second exit and, with the help of my step-mother, navigate my way to the restaurant via an alternate route. When I was leaving the resteraunt, I mused aloud that perhaps I should try to retrace my route back up highway 66 instead of going the way I should have come down route 50 back to the beltway. I was fearful of traveling along a road that was different than the path I had just taken because figuring out where I am while driving is so difficult for me now. My step-mother heard me talking to myself and quickly admonished me that route 50 was the correct way to go. I ignored my own concerns and took her advice.

45 minutes later, I was in a near panic because I knew that I was lost along the beltway. While it loops around the city and I would eventually see my exit, there was a very good chance I would miss even that because it would not be from the direction I was expecting and could take another hour just to get to it. I called my two best friends because I knew they would willing look on the Internet to discover where I was, but neither was home. I did reach my writing student mother and she did turn me around and sent me back in the correct direction, but she was busy and did not understand how upset I was at feeling completely lost and completely stupid.

When I was recounting the experience to my dear friend W, she reminded me that I am not stupid, I just have an MS-riddled, cheese-hole brain. I found small comfort in that, until she very logically pointed out that I really should look into one of those auto navigation systems. Of course, I very much need a job, and at this point, I would have to repair the financial damage that has come of now starting my fourth month unemployed, technology has advanced to the point that I could have help in the car though there is no one in my life who can ride around with me to rescue me in those times of confusion.

Now, I will offer that the direction that I went on the beltway to go to the restaurant was West toward Richmond, and when I was faced with choosing a direction on the way home, East, the natural reverse, was not an option. My options were South toward Richmond or North toward Tysons Corner. I thought for sure that since I had been driving toward Richmond on the way to the restaurant, the logical choice would be to drive away from Richmond on the way home. Alas, that was the wrong choice for some convoluted, yet logical reason to the transportation department of this area.

Still, that feeling of panic, confusion, and utter loneliness was oh so difficult to face and lingers a bit even now that I am safely home again.

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