A while back we went to the second of three reunions my husband’s family holds each year.
Before we left, The Mister talked to me about directions and I was all, “Mmmhm, okay,” because I don’t know the ways. I like to stop for drinks at that McDonald’s in Spencer on the way home and I don’t like to take 69 because there is no place to pee. This is the extent of my knowledge on the trip. I have been down there more times than I can count in the last thirty years, but no, I do not know the way. In 1996, I attempted to drive to Granny’s house on my own and got terrible lost.
We were clear out in Morgan County when The Mister finally said, “This isn’t the way I wanted to go.”
Y’all remember how we used GPS to get to the lake last year? My husband did not learn from my mistake. IF YOU KNOW THE WAY, DO NOT USE THE GPS.
“Is this the way that takes 69?”
“I selected the wrong directions. Pushed the wrong button.”
He decided we could get from one route to another.
“See how we get from here to 67.”
“Okay.” i fucking hate navigating. just wanna look at the pretty trees and enjoy the fluffy clouds but oooookay
The GPS said we could drive through Gosport to Paragon Road.
Never, ever, ever do that. Never.
Initially, it was like drivin on any country road ever. The road wound around a series of farmhouses and secluded bungalows for miles and miles.
Then the GPS said we could take three minutes off the trip. The Mister asked me what I thought, and I said, “I literally know nothin bout where we are or where we’re goin so I cannot make an informed decision.”
He said, “Okay, let’s do it.”
Sassy said she felt weird, I said she’s too city. The Mister turned right and my heart jumped into my throat. Sassy and I said in unison, “Uh…”
Y’all, our driveway is wider than that road.
It’s important you understand I am not exaggerating. This is not hyperbole. The road was not wide enough for two cars. Like a one-lane bridge, but instead, a road we’d be on for more than seven miles.
To make matters worse, the shoulder had eroded significantly, pavement slipping off into ravines. The road was bumpy, paved and patched so long ago it was gray. When it wasn’t wooded, it was surrounded on both sides by corn taller than my car, so every time we took a corner, it was a leap of faith.
I regret I was not brave enough to take a video of our journey on the road to death, as I spent the better part of seven miles praying and cursing and gripping the Oh Shit Handle with my useless arthritic hand.
On the straight shots, I did contemplate the beauty of the road less taken, and I thought well, at least when some local yokel plows his sturdy truck into us, I will have had lovely scenery on the way to my death, but generally, my brain was paralyzed by fear.
My husband sped on those roads.
Grandpa Jake is inconsistent, he is. Just when you think he’s pokey as fuck, he whirls through parking garages or jets around on tiny country roads.
I knew he was stressed-out and probably some motorpool combat veteran brain took charge. I’m sure he thought the faster we got out, the better, but we were not in a tactical vehicle and I wanted out ALIVE.
As all women know, from carrying that burden of always being right, it’s crucial to carefully select the situations in which we tell a man he’s wrong. (Too much is emasculating and too little is madness.) Thusly I said unto The Mister, in my most calm, direct, and logical tone, “You drive slower than this at home and those roads all have two lanes. You don’t know these roads. You can’t see anything. You need to slow down. Drastically.”
Then I added in a snarky way, “And I don’t ever wanna hear another peep about the way I drive at the lake, cause I know those roads like the back of my hand, they got two lanes, and I NEVER drive like this.”
Sassy uttered out, “Thank you.”
The Mister slowed down and we did make it to 67.
Ever taken a harrowing detour or shortcut?