Anyway, the combination of Google Maps, Poynt, Mapquest and BlackBerry Maps has allowed me to get from Point A to Point B for several years now without getting too lost. Smartphones are, indeed, smart, and while the printed Mapquest directions are sometimes a little obtuse, they've done the job just fine, thankyouverymuch.
We recently inherited a GPS unit for the car. I
One look at this line and my hungry, hungry husband's face
fell. Hard. But this was just the line to get to the counter
where you placed your order, and it moved swiftly.
I just had to trust that the little screen was on the right path. And sho' nuff, it was. We turned that corner, found a parking place and joined the line of people waiting to chow down on some damned good 'que.
Every place we went was someplace I hadn't been before, and we arrived at every destination with no problem whatsoever. On a couple of occasions, the route FROM the spot was completely different from the route TO it, which was disconcerting (and took us through more sketchy neighborhoods), but we always made it there and back again.
Obviously, or I wouldn't be here, right? Heh.
I am, therefore, declaring GPS systems for cars the greatest invention since the wheel.
We've gone to unfamiliar towns and to unfamiliar parts of familiar towns plenty of times, but always with more than a bit of trepidation on my part. I remember the last time we left Washington, DC, how thrilled I was when, with little trouble, actually, I made it to the highway leading home. DC is the scariest place I've ever driven. Even scarier than Massachusetts, which has a rep for scary driving.
My husband has supreme confidence in both my driving and my navigating skills. Finally, thanks to this new little gadget, so do I. My car (a Ford Escape) came equipped with two cigarette lighters. I think they knew who was going to be driving it. I just ordered a unit that turns a cigarette lighter into two USB ports. With three connections, I can have the iPod, the Magellan and the BlackBerry all plugged in and charged up at the same time.
I love me some gadgets.
One thing that struck me about being GPS-equipped is that you really can be on your own. No need to stop for directions. We found Mela using walking directions provided by the BlackBerry instead of asking one of the many passersby. Those of us who are plugged in are little islands of information, happy to help, and happy not to need help. I wonder how this will affect our culture 20 years from now? By then we'll probably all be plugged in, or chip-equipped, and we won't need each other at all.
In the meantime, I wonder why I waited so long to get a GPS system for the car.
Oh. Right. There's that frugal thing.
So the question du jour is: Do you have a GPS in your car? Do you use the voice prompts (that annoyed me and I muted it right off the bat)? Do you want one or are you happy with Mapquest or Poynt? Or a road atlas? Do tell!