Friday, 2 October 2015

A Free "er"

I come from a long line of sea faring people. Some willingly, but I suspect that most of them were pressed into service of King and Country, waking up below decks with a large lump on their heads and the smell of the sea in their nostrils. Being pragmatic people, they made the best of a bad situation and some eventually made a good life for themselves.

Part of being a mariner is that you have to develop a sense of direction. It wouldn't do to sail into those areas of the ocean where monsters lived or God forbid off the edge of the world. Even those ancestors that avoided the press gangs by drinking at home would have had to develop a system of navigating the countryside by either foot or on horseback. I guess my point is that in the ancient world we humans had to find or way through the wilderness quite literally.

I grew up in a city and for the first part of my life I had chauffeurs that answered to the name of mom and dad take me everywhere I needed to go. Later on I walked and rode my bike in an ever expanding world, eventually knowing all the hidden routes to get where I needed to go. Somewhere along the line I developed a pretty good sense of direction, knowing which way was north, south, east and west, even without looking at the sun. I could walk in the deep woods and would always find my way home. Usually without any tears or search and rescue parties.

Recent years have seen a reversal in the inherited ability all those generations worked so hard to develop. Partly that's because I became more sedentary in my lifestyle and partly because my world has developed well defined, relatively smallish boundaries. I do venture forth every now and then, but I come well equipped with directions and maps so that I won't wander into parts of the world with monsters.

Luckily for me the good people at Garmin have come to my rescue. I not only never get lost, but I have an electronic companion who guides me every step of the way. The odd time she gets as confused as I do, but together we have always managed to return home. She will willingly find me the nearest gas station, grocery store and restaurant. The only problem is that I have to know where I am going before I go there which takes the "explore" part out of explorer. That only leaves the "er" and no one ever got anywhere just using the "er".

I guess I could take the "er" and slap it behind "search" or "find" and even "Love". I have a free "er" in my life and nothing but possibilities.

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