Posted by: travelrat | June 7, 2018

Man Is Not Lost; He Is Just Uncertain of His Position.

Somewhere in Herefordshire: 29th May 2018.

We were going to meet Jack and his friends on their cycle ride at Much Wenlock, in Shropshire. A quick glance at the road atlas showed no problem at all; it was right on the Bridgenorth-Shrewsbury road, along which we’ve already travelled a couple of times on the way to and from North Wales.

No need to have the SATNAV squawking away all the time; we didn’t even need road maps, just a few notes written on a post-it note stuck to the dashboard. The way I used to do it, in fact, especially if travelling alone.

BUT:

‘It doesn’t work like that’

We’d just done a ‘pitstop’ at a service area on the M5, when Jack called. Did we want to meet them for lunch at a pub in a village called Sutton St. Nicholas? The road atlas couldn’t suggest a direct route; the shortest way seemed to be via a maze of minor country roads. So, on with the SATNAV.

I often wonder how we managed such things in the old days, before such technology came on the scene? I remember the Coast to Coast Walk, which we did back in the 80s … keeping in touch with the support team with 2-way radios I’d borrowed from work. One guy did bring a mobile phone … but it weighed as much as a breeze-block, and was useless on the hill, so it did most of the route in the back of the van.

Anyway, we’d hardly left the motorway, when we came across a road closure, and a diversion. At one stage, I was stuck between a choice of following the yellow ‘diversion’ signs; taking a route which the road atlas said was good or following SATNAV’s instructions.

The yellow arrows did eventually bring us back on to SATNAV’s recommended route … and it did (supplemented with directions from a passer-by) eventually get us there, although we did wonder, many times, if we’d been misdirected … ‘This can’t be right!’ was a much-uttered phrase.

But, it was!’ We got there before the cyclists did; they pitched up about 30 minutes after we arrived, and we had a very enjoyable lunch together, before setting off to Much Wenlock.

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