GPS, AAA and Enfield

Her: Trials at home. Trials at work. Got an invitation to spend a quiet weekend at a friend’s lakeside camp in northern Maine (hey, I’m from Portland – Enfield is north, right?)

I leave work late. Have a 3 hour drive. It’s getting dark. Luckily the skies are clear, dark, but clear. Luckily I have my trusty GPS. Luckily there’s less and less traffic as I travel north on the interstate.

“Turn right on exit 217…turn right in .4 miles…turn left in 6.5 miles….turn right in .1 mile” squwaks the mechanical female voice. I wonder if these come in male voices… Hey, where is the tar? I’m on a dirt road, gravel? “Turn left in .1 miles…turn right in .1 miles…” No worries. I have my trusty GPS.

It sure is dark. Can’t see the stars. Has it clouded over? The trees sure are close to the road. Some branches actually touch the sides of my car. Where AM I going? Where AM I?? OK. Here’s a house, my friend’s camp is next. My GPS says turn right (these ARE accurate, right?)

I see a few tiny lights. Are they stars? Are they cars (haven’t seen any in a while. A long while, come to think of it…)?  Are they the lights to the camp?

What? The road ends. I see a camp. I think that is a house. I could almost touch if I reached out my hand. Is that a camp? It’s awfully small. It’s awfully dark. Wait – those lights are in the NEXT camp over. How do I get there? The road has ended. Those lights are on the other side of the trees. THAT must be where I want to be. Now, how to get there…WHere’s the road? What does my GPS say??? Do these even work on dirt roads???

Simple. I’ll turn around. Hmmm, not much of a parking lot here. I see grass over there and over there. Don’t want to drive on anyone’s lawn. This does not look like lawn, there’s no grass, it’s dark, must be the driveway. I’ll just turn my wheels here…feels funny…feels like I’m going down…where AM I??? I’ll just back up…what? I’m stuck. Why is my car pointing DOWN? Why can’t I back up??? Where AM I? It’s so dark…

Me: It’s just past bedtime. Left for Augusta at 20 min of 6AM and got home at 20 min past 6PM. Tired, but had a great technology conference. Ahhhh. my nice cozy bed. I’ll sleep good tonight, unlike last night when I was so nervous about presenting at the conference. The stars are bright and sparkly. I pulled down the shades so Eos doesn’t wake me too early. Want to sleep in. I’m warm. Cozy. Sleep…

THUNK. THRASH. “There’s a car in our septic tank!”  I must be dreaming. In the summer we have an occasional bat, noisy boats on the lake, barking dogs, fireworks… It’s October. No one is around this time of year. All the camps are closed up. WHAT is my husband hollering about??? Wake up! Septic tank? Car? What are all these lights doing in our front yard?

Yep. She drove into the open hole of our newly-installed septic tank. The contractor is due back ‘any day’ to close up the hole. It was not a new installation, rather replacement of a worn-out tank, so it was done as an emergency job. He’ll come back ‘later’ to ‘finish up.’

She drove right into the hole. In the middle of our front lawn. In the middle of the night.

Her: No problem. I’ve got Triple A.

Us: Uh-huh.

Her: They’ll be here in an hour.

Us: Yep.

Her: They won’t be here in an hour. There isn’t any service available until morning.

Us. We ARE in Enfield.



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