Lost in Plain Sight

I got lost today, even though I left early enough, I thought, for that not to be an issue. I should have known better. I had been to the campus before, albeit 12 years ago, for exactly one day, so it shouldn’t have happened. In my own mind I still have a photographic memory, but … Continue reading Lost in Plain Sight

Taking Some Wrong Turns

Astronaut-Earth-sign1-300x221Why do I always get lost? I always get cold and clammy any time I see a “Detour” sign, which is ironic since my first novel is called Detours, but that is a metaphor while real detours just freak me out. I guess it’s because I usually only know one way to get anywhere, so when that way is taken away from me I cease to function as well. When I first moved to upstate New York it seemed like I was getting lost every single day, and getting lost here means going deep into cow country and not being able to find a road that leads out of it.

Once, a couple of summers ago, I was in Rome (Rome, NY, people) for a get-together with some teacher colleagues. I had never been in Rome by myself before, but I thought I knew the way back to route 69 that would take me back in the direction of home. The problem was that I ended up on the wrong street and I assumed it was parallel to the route I wanted. But it wasn’t. I kept driving anyway. I figured I would eventually run into an area that I was familiar with, and of course the longer I kept going straight the more likely that wouldn’t happen. I wasn’t going back, though, because that would admit I was so far off the path, so I kept driving.

The later it got, when the shadows began taking over the road in front of me and I had to turn on my headlights, the more I began to worry. When I finally passed a sign for “Ava,” which is an hour away from where I wanted to be, I finally realized it was time to suck it up and admit that I was hopelessly lost. So I stopped the car by the side of the road (I still wasn’t turning around) and I did what I usually do when faced with a dilemma. I called my wife. She directed me to a road I would have missed otherwise, and within minutes I was back on familiar ground. I guess that’s what comes from actually being from around here. Continue reading “Taking Some Wrong Turns”

You Call This a Shower?: Part 4

You’ve seen one castle, you’ve seen them all.

So, yeah, I was the one who got lost, and I’m still embarrassed about it to this day. You can believe my crew never let me live it down either. When we got up that second day in Shannon, Ireland, I felt like death warmed over, but I took a long shower and pretended I was in the rain forest. You know, because the water pressure was horrible and was more like a mist than anything else. I couldn’t help still feeling dirty even after a long shower, but it was better than nothing, I guess.

The bus took us through Limerick where we stopped to stretch, and on to Killarney, which was a magical place. We started our tour at Ross Castle where our tour guide told us so many historical stories of the 15th century castle. I also went by myself down the street to an ATM to get out some Euros for the tip for a guide I hadn’t known we’d have. It’s also when I started worrying that we hadn’t placed enough in our account to deal with the cadre of guides we would use along the way, but I put it out of my head for the moment. When I headed back to the castle the group was ready to move on.

Climbing in the national park.
County Kerry.

Being such a large group, though, several of the leaders wanted to go to the national park while others wanted to visit St. Mary’s Cathedral. I led the smaller group to see St. Mary’s, and that was what eventually led to me getting lost. See, they were doing some roadwork and the bus was going to meet the first group at the park in two hours’ time, then come back to get us at St. Mary’s. On our way to St. Mary’s several of my group members said they were hungry and wanted to go to Subway to get some food (yes, there is a Subway in Killarney). I wasn’t hungry so I said I would just meet them at St. Mary’s and use a few minutes of my alone time to do a little sightseeing in Killarney. Continue reading “You Call This a Shower?: Part 4”


“If you’re following me, you’re lost too.” – phrase read off the bumper sticker on an SUV. I almost followed it after reading those words. Everyone gets lost once in a while, and some are lost more often than not. We’ve all heard tales of men who refuse to ask for directions, and of women … Continue reading Lost