When Good GPS’s Go Bad

Posted on July 15, 2013



The circumstances of Life in the Boomer Lane’s jet set lifestyle involved Now Husband making a reservation at a hotel near the Newark Airport, picking her up at the airport, and driving to the hotel. LBL will give you no other details about where she was coming from, why she and Now Husband had to stay near the airport, or where they were going next. This is out of consideration to you, the reader. Were details to be given, you would most likely reassess the details of your own paltry lives and find them seriously wanting.

Now Husband, for a reason known only to himself, chose a hotel that had the following reviews from most people on Trip Advisor: Good hotel, but you won’t find it from the airport. Now Husband decided to test that out, using LBL as a hapless passenger in his car.

The plane arrived at 11:30PM, a great time for panhandlers to wait in baggage for unsuspecting travelers. LBL didn’t ask the panhandler (P) how he got to the airport, but whether he drove or took a cab or courtesy shuttle, he had to cover expenses, which would make his job a bit tougher than the average money-seeking street person.

From baggage, LBL walked outside and enjoyed watching all other passengers get picked up. Finally, the only people remaining outside the door were herself and P, who was waiting for his taxi. Now Husband, told by LBL that she was at Terminal B, was waiting at Terminal C. LBL and the panhandler cemented their new relationship by exchanging cell numbers and promising to keep in touch.

Now Husband arrived at the terminal sometime after midnight. LBL hugged P and got into Now Husband’s car. The ride to the hotel had three distinct parts:

Part A (20 minutes): This involved Now Husband trying at least four different ways to get to the hotel. Each way resulted in LBL’s observation that the hotel was on the opposite side of the highway from where they were, with no way to get to the other side. She is fairly sure there was a Twilight Zone episode like this, which involved the heroine never being able to get to her hotel and missing out on the Continental Breakfast she always looked forward to.

Part B (30 minutes): Now Husband decided to use the GPS but couldn’t get it into the holder. He asked LBL to hold it for him. All parties in the car were optimistic that this would be the answer. Optimism began to waver when the GPS took them into an industrial park. Optimism went into a coma when the GPS took them from there through two neighborhoods and went onto life support when they were instructed to “Turn onto the road.” The “road” was finally located. It was a gravel path with a large barrier across it. Repeated attempts to leave the area brought them back to the “road.”

Part C (30 minutes): LBL likes to call this part “Things You Don’t Know About Your Spouse Until You Are Already Deep Into The Marriage and It’s Too Late to Back Out.”
This part involved LBL calling the hotel and asking them to direct her there from a little path with a barrier. As the desk clerk responded with “I’ll find a map and be very pleasant but at some point you will realize that I am of no help to you,” Now Husband said, “Hang up.” LBL asked for a clarification, and Now Husband repeated, “Hang up,” only the second “Hang up” was accompanied by a slight frothing of the mouth. LBL did not hang up. The desk clerk did not find any of the streets she said they were passing on any map. Now Husband began to hurl threats at the desk clerk and shriek to LBL that she should hang up now because “She doesn’t know a fucking thing and tell her that we are going to another hotel right now (He had already checked into this one and his suitcase was in the room) and we’ll be back in the morning to get our money back!”

LBL moved as far away from him as her seatbelt would allow and tried to whisper further names of streets to the desk clerk, while Now Husband continued to shriek and froth. Suddenly, Now Husband swerved over and stopped the car. LBL considered escaping, but her suitcase was in the trunk and she couldn’t go anywhere without her blow dryer. She kept her cell on, so the desk clerk could testify at the trial later.

Now Husband was furiously plugging things into the GPS. Spittle still flecked his face and the front of his shirt. LBL asked him what he was doing. He said, “You changed the destination. Instead of the hotel, we were going to a cemetery.”

LBL considered this new information and responded with “All I did was hold the GPS.”

“No, the way you were holding it changed the destination to map coordinates and that was a cemetery.”

LBL still doesn’t understand how this happened, but she is pretty sure that the same thing happened at the end of the Twilight Zone episode, where instead of a hotel, the woman keeps arriving at the cemetery until she realizes she is actually dead. LBL didn’t think she was dead because she was hungry.

Readers will be relieved to find out that Now Husband and LBL slept at the hotel that night and not on a random grave, although they now believe that the entire state of New Jersey is to be avoided at all cost. In addition, LBL will always carry her blow dryer in her hand when she is traveling in a car with Now Husband.