Sunday, 22 June 2008

Me and the Sat Nav.

Or should that be "The Sat Nav and I"?

But I digress...already. One line in and I'm already digressing. Oh..looks like I'm doing it again. Bear with me, it looks like it might be one of those posts.

So, I borrowed a colleague's Sat Nav for my little expedition across London today. I've not used one before so was a little unsure as to what to expect from the tinny little voice that would be my companion for the journey.

It was not what I had imagined.

Although, to be fair, I think my expectations were a little high.

You see, I am comfortable with a map. Give me a map, plonk me in the passenger seat and I can get you anywhere. I know where we are at any given time and can tell you what to expect around the next bend or what station we should be passing. Trouble is, I'm the same when I'm driving. I constantly need to be sure I'm on the right road so everytime I stop at a set of traffic lights I have to check the map to be sure I'm doing OK. Yep, there's the railway bridge. Excellent, there's Avenue Road on my left. Three roads to go before I have to turn right. Good stuff. I had expected the Sat Nav to do something similar. I expected that at every junction it would tell me "Straight on. Don't turn here, you've two more roads to go".

It doesn't. And I had to relinquish control and all knowledge of where I was to this machine. My teeth were clenched and my hands were gripping the wheel. It was stressful.

The other problem is that I am a hopeless judge of distances. An inch? No problem. A yard? Easy. Any bigger than that? Not a clue.

So the Sat Nav comes up with these little gems

"Turn left 500 yards". This being London, there are any number of left turns before the one the Sat Nav is indicating. Which one does she mean? How far is 500 yards for pity sake?

This is followed by "Turn left 200 yards". That's no better. Then we get "Turn left". What? Now? Oh, that's 200 yards. OK. My distance reckoning improved no end by the end of the journey.

Then the one that periodically scared me to death.

I'd be travelling on a fairly straight road and she would announce "Turn right" What?? Now?? But there isn't a right turn, what are you talking about woman?? And then she'd calmly continue with "2 miles". Why do I need to know I have to turn right in 2 miles? Tell me when I'm 500 yards away. I can do 500 yards now.

Then we get to the point where I have to turn left into the road I've programmed in. Except the road has been dug up and there's this great big hole which I am obviously not going to turn left into. And because I haven't programmed in a house number, she kindly tells me "You've reached your destination" and that's that. She isn't going to help me any longer and I'm left to my own devices. Drat.

But I got there, the homecheck went well and we're keeping everything crossed.

And the return journey? I relaxed and let the lady do her stuff. Far less stressful.

7 comments:

  1. Husand and I got lost using SatNav he gave me for Christmas last year. It is a Tom Tom. I have a son called Tim and tuned the satnav voice to 'English Man' inevitably we now have a Tim Tim.

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  2. I'm not on sat navs ~ I'm somewhere in the white area over the blue river line! I remembering directing my sister to Arabawn, the Farmer's pretend coop & her sat nav was panicking because we were taking the wrong road to Nenagh. It kept imploring her to "Make a U-turn when safe to do so" with more & more desparation in its synthetic voice!

    How many lurchers do you have? Do you know their breeding? 1 of my silver pups is "helping" me wtrite this.

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  3. Kill, they are both rescue so I can only guess at their breeding...Greyhound and something!

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  4. Tigger, my first Lurcher was supposedly Greyhound x Sasluki & looking at the pups we've had, that would explain the strange fluffy coats, but I know there was Staffy in his breeding after a Staffy girl fell in love with him & the likeness was incredible. His girly ~ a rescue dog that had been abandonned ~ was a Staffy on Whippet legs. I have 2 of their sons & a daughter. Sons avoided the theft of Tig, Tashka & 3 pups as they had been on a failed placement & daughter was going to be dumped ~ I found that out after agreeing to take her in on a temporary basis while her family moved house.

    Your one on the header looks like Greyhound x rough coat Terrier. You can see Stockings, his son Banditto & mother Mindy on my Wordpress blog:

    http://killimengri.wordpress.com/2008/06/22/a-break/

    I can't post pictures on Blogger any more.

    There are 10 more pups ~ 2 fluffies, 2 silver & the rest are black or black & white & vary from being fine-boned greyhound-types to hefty bruisers of staffies who will be as big as their dads. Funny, the biggest ones are all boys & all the girls are delicate.

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  5. PS. Tig was a private rehoming as his poshrat Gypsy owner needed a settled home for him as his landscaping work took him all over the country & often his beloved dog wasn't welcomed ~ word went out that I needed a dog & Tig turned up with bowls, collar & a sack of food (& owner in tow).
    (poshrat=half-blood)

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  6. I love my sat nav. Before I had it I was always nervous (on unfamiliar journeys) that would get lost and stranded, but with my Nuvi I know that even if I take a wrong turn it'll just find a new route and get me there in the end.

    Musch less stressful to me.

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  7. Hahaha, I love sat nav and would be well lost with out it - I have no sense of direction! :]

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