Sunday, September 14, 2008

Learning Curve

So, I sat up last night and read most of the book on the navigation system. It's got a lot to it, but it seemed relatively simple. I have the attitude that no computer is going to get the best of me, at least not easily. I decided to go get some takeout for Sunday lunch to 1) give myself an excuse to take Big Red out for a small outing and 2) so I would not have to cook. Before I left, I played around with the navigation system a little and added my office address in anticipation of letting it tell me how to get there on Tuesday. In a side note here, I will add that I was surprised and pleased to see that it was now recognizing the name of the street I live on, even though initially it had told me such an address did not exist. GPS in action.

In another little side note, I discovered that the visor lights were not broken after all. The switch was set wrong. Always go back and read your manual and possibly save a ribbing from the service department. I wasn't born yesterday by a long shot.

So I headed out to the highway on my fast-food mission and did not realize that I had inadvertently told the car to go to work. Just before I reached the intersection with Highway 95, a loud voice informed me to turn right. It's not readily apparent how to switch off the guidance system, so I decided to wait until I was stopped to puzzle it out. So, until I reached Taco Cabana and took my place at the end of the drive thru line, I kept hearing the voice tell me to take the next legal U-turn. Every time I would pass a place that would allow that, you could almost hear the thing sigh in disgust and tell me where the next legal U-turn could be found.

It took me awhile, but I was able to find out how to disengage the guidance system and turn the volume down on the disembodied voice. I had plenty of time because the aftermath of the hurricane is that everybody is headed the other direction today and the highway business district was buzzing with people stopping for gas, food and restroom breaks. The folks at Taco Cabana and Wendy's had reached the glazed-eye state and the traffic was still coming.

It's disappointing that I won't be driving Big Red to work tomorrow. A co-worker is coming through Bastrop to pick me up and transport me to the office where I can retrieve the Explorer and bring it home. But come Tuesday I intend to start giving that navigation system a run for its money. I'm already looking forward to my scheduled trip to Dallas next month and testing it out under high-stress driving where I don't have a clue where I'm going. (At least I'm not starting with Houston.)

Oh, yeah, another cool thing. My car and my new cell phone communicate with each other and if I get a call it comes across my radio speakers and I can talk handsfree. Am I a high-tech granny or what?


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