Essay — Going Places

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Here in Carpenter Country we’ve discovered adventure awaits if we leave the GPS, smart phone, ipad, and other electronic devices at home and travel the “old fashioned” way—using a map and our ingenuity.

Before venturing forth, we stash a few emergency bottles of water in the cooler along with a several packs of snack crackers. We check our vehicle’s tires and oil, and of course, the window washer, since most byways are buggy places. Lastly, we grab our atlas or an up-to-date map, and–

Ready, set, go!

As soon as we’re out of our comfort zone, we choose the path less traveled. That means avoiding interstates and toll highways. We find the name of a town or a state or county road (preferably one we’ve never heard of before) on the map and head for it.

Once on our way, we enjoy the scenery, check out farm stands, small mom-and-pop restaurants, and the local attractions. We stop for lunch or gas and mosey around the town square. We’ve come across craft shows, health fairs, and carnivals with merry-go-rounds. Chowing down on hot dogs, cotton candy, and ice cream—whatever suits our fancy–is part of the fun.

Locating a place to stay overnight can turn into an adventure of its own. Hotels and motels are great, but if we pass a bed and breakfast that looks inviting we stop in to ask if beautifully decorated rooms with those wonderful high beds and goose down quilts are available.

We’ve thought about what to do if we find ourselves in a scary situation too.

Our rule: Should that unlikely event occur, don’t panic! Reach into the glove compartment for the phone (yes, you knew we hid it there 🙂 ), and call for help.

But we try to remember we’re traveling the old fashioned way—

So getting lost is not an emergency.


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