I had to go out this morning.

My destination was a house in an area of the suburbs that I had never been in before.

It's at times like this that the old SatNav comes in handy, so I carefully entered the address last night and it not only gave me the route but told me the time it would take to get there.  Brilliant!

I went out to the car this morning and plugged the SatNav in and the fucking thing refused to start up.  It kept moaning that the battery was low, but seeing as it was plugged into the car, I didn't believe it.  The little shit had let me down, the one time I needed it.

I had to dash back into the house, fire up the laptop and run Google Earth.  I tapped in the address and there it was, bang in the middle of an enormous housing estate.

The problem was that I now had to memorise the route, and seeing as I was short on time I had to do it quickly.  And for those of you unfamiliar with Ireland, they have a great fondness for building vast estates with twisty roads and dozens of cul-de-sacs and junctions, and invariably you have to run the gamut of another estate before you get to the one you are looking for.  Road signs?  Forget it.  Road names?  That would make things too easy.  The estate I was looking for only had a name for the entire estate and you had to work out the numbers for yourself [and they rarely run in sequence].

So I took about a minute [which was all the time I had] to memorise the route [second on the right, fifth left, third exit at the roundabout, forth left and then keep right until the road stops].  Cursing quietly to myself [and to anyone within a fifty yard radius] I hit the road.

To my amazement, I arrived at the destination and bang on time without any three point turns.  I don't quite know now how I did it, as my memory isn't that hectic these days.  So I did my business there and went back to the car.

I switched on the ignition.  "Where would you like to go?" asks the SatNav in its usual cheerful voice.  I said something about why the fuck it couldn't behave itself and why did it have to sulk just when I needed it and what the fuck game did it think it was playing.  It protested that it didn't understand, which is probably just as well.  "I just want to go home!" I yelled at it.  "Calculating route to Home" it said in that smug little voice. 

Sometimes technology can be really fucking irritating.


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Sometimes I surprise myself — 16 Comments

    • Hmmm.  I did take a second look at that line as soon as I had typed it, but assumed that others would pass by the double entendre.  So I'm not the only one with a smutty mind?

      Anyhows, how would you phrase it?  "Completed my transaction"?  "Did what I went there to do"?  If I just said I arrived and left again, it would sound like one hell of a wasted journey for a lot of effort?

      • I was staring to wonder if IW had cut you off and you were forced into availing of a public 'amenity' somewhere in the heart of scobieville! Anyways, just arriving and leaving again isn't so bad, one can always assume something along the lines of senility/alzheimers/the car needed a run/too many guinnesses or some such human peculiarity, all of which are very forgiveable 🙂

        On the subject of 'business' we've devised out own somewhat succinct phrase to communicate the need – a 'woo'!!

        • IW can't cut me off because they don't know where I am connected, and do you think I'm going to tell 'em?

          And 'too many Guinnesses' at that hour of the morning?  What do you take me for?

          A woo?  I'll remember that next time I'm reading Jane Austin.  It'll give a whole new meaning to her writing.

  1. Technology can always be relied upon to fail when you most need it. Too many people these days rely on SatNav without having any form of back up. If they knew how the system works, they would likely buy a map (and learn how to use it!).

    • Unfortunately there are a couple of problems there.  The first is that maps of cities [and even the countryside] are often out of date by the time they are printed.  The second is that I don't have any up to date maps anyway and literally only had minutes to memorise the journey.

      I did think of using my mobile phone – a first time use for anything other than phoning someone? – but I find it tricky to steer and peer at a small screen in my hand.

  2. I find Google gets you to within a mile of your destination and then you're on your own. If I use it I uaually end up out of the car walking around looking for the place I'm going to.

    • When I found the place on Google Earth, I had a look at Street View to have a ook a some critical junctions where I might go wrong.  That was very handy.  What surprised me was that there was a bouncy castle van parked next door which was there in Street View was still there when I arrived.  Either Street View is somewhat spooky or the van has been there a long time……

  3. That sounds like your SatNav has one of those "Exercise the Auld Fart's Memory by Whining About a Low Battery and Not Starting Up" feature that occurs at random but not frequent intervals just to keep you on your toes.

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