You know how Video Killed the Radio Star? Well it seems that GPS has killed my inner compass. This past weekend I drove to Orlando and, since my niece was in the car, my dad had us take his GPS. Now, I had kind of a hard time letting go of my mapquest directions which were printed out and sitting in my glove compartment, but I decided to try out Tina Turner. (On a side note, the GPS is named Tina Turner, you know because she tells you where to turn...) Anyway, Tina was pretty fun to have in the car. I especially liked being able to watch the map on screen and see how long it would take us to get there. Although I promise that I still watched the road and was a very responsible driver! Tina and I did have our differences, like whenever we entered a construction zone, but overall it really liked having someone telling me when and where to turn.
However, when we got to Sea World I discovered the trouble with Tina Turner. Despite my notoriously bad memory, and my inability to remember much of anything before 1989, I have a fairly great sense of direction. If I visit a place (think theme park, mall, zoo) I can usually look at the map briefly and then be able to navigate my way around. This is possibly the only area where my memory is excellent (although I can remember a ridiculous number of lyrics from musicals). I entered Sea World confident in my ability to navigate the park. I had visited it before, and knew generally where everything was. But it seemed like no matter where I tried to go I got lost. Looking for the Whale and Dolphin Theater? I ended up at the Artic. Looking for Dolphin Cove..oops those are the Clydesdale's. Need a bathroom, well there's a gift shop.
I figured it was a fluke, but the next day when we went back to Sea World the same thing happened. My internal compass was perpetually set to "Middle of damn nowhere" and I usually got there by pushing directly against the crowds of people who knew what they were doing. I spend 1 day relaying on the GPS to get me somewhere and suddenly I can't even find the exit (and there were signs)! I'm going to the zoo on Thursday and I really hope my internal compass has turned back on.