Monday, November 3, 2014

Wayne, This is Josh Talking

Do we really pay attention, or has technology taken over?  I began to think about this after a recent business trip to Boston.  For a change, I decided to drive and had a reservation at a Marriott Courtyard in South Boston.  As I left the house in the morning, I entered the address into my GPS and settled into the approximately four-hour trip north.  This was a great opportunity to catch up on some podcasts, both educational and music.   As I got closer to my destination, I actually turned off the radio and sat up a little straighter in my seat to pay closer attention to the directions.  I was so busy watching and listening to Josh and was excited when he said, “You have reached your destination.” I looked around and found myself in a residential area with no hotels, just a Dunkin Donuts and a T station.  I was absolutely confused and decided that it would be best to call the hotel for help.  Very politely, they told me the “GPS Address” to enter.  I cannot believe that places now have an official street address and a GPS address…

OK – a slight digression.  In our household, my family decided to give names to the GPS voices.  In my car, there is a male voice, so he is Josh.  In my wife’s car, she has a female voice that they named Gertie.  My wife and daughters no longer call the device a GPS, but refer to them by name.  I always know which car someone used by them letting me know that Josh, or Gertie, gave good directions.  It seems as if Josh provides the more direct path, while Gertie enjoys the scenic routes.

To get to the office, I needed to walk to the T station.  The front desk was very helpful and they gave me the directions which were simple - walk out the only driveway to road, go a few steps, then make a left at the traffic light and eventually you will see the T station. As I walked down the driveway, the street looked familiar - I drove down this street.  I drove by this driveway!  Wait a minute, what is this little sign by the driveway sticking out of the ground?  It is the Marriott sign – I drove by this sign!  I turned around and behind me, there were two building that were obviously the only hotels in the area – I drove by this hotel!  I cannot believe it, if I were watching where I was going instead of blindly following Josh, I would have seen the extremely small sign sitting at ground level announcing the hotel.  Have I become so dependent on technology that I forget to look up and “smell the roses?”