17 May 2011

Here is where you got lost

I have a fairly unerring sense of direction. That sometimes fails me.

The daughter and I arrived above ground again, and I surreptitiously pulled out my map to try to get my bearings. Let's face it, nothing says "please steal my purse" in a big city like being distracted by something else. And no sooner had I gotten the map out than a very nice lady approached me and said, "Honey, do you need directions?"

I smiled, tucked my bag firmly under my arm, glanced around just in case, and said a little sheepishly that I just needed to be pointed in the direction of the Met.

(I'm not particularly paranoid as a rule, but remember that this was a mere week after certain events had taken place, and the city was on high alert, too. The police and military presence was pretty unnerving. I was even more cautious given the fact the daughter was with me.)

But the lady turned out to be just that: a lady and one who had a desire to be helpful.

"Oh, you just keep walking straight that way," she pointed, "and you'll be fine."

I thanked her for her kindness, and she replied, "You know, I always appreciate it when someone helps me when I'm in a strange country, so I'm glad to help out here."

Strange...country? After our benefactor went on her way, the daughter shrugged extravagantly and I smiled.

(We are frequently, to our huge amusement, taken for being from somewhere other than the U.S. Often, we're believed to be Canadian; the spouse has been mistaken for German, somewhat explicable because he looks German, and I'm often asked if I'm from Britain, which makes no sense whatever.)

We walked past the stately apartment buildings, the daughter crooning over every dog she saw. And we arrived at the wall surrounding Central Park, and I promptly turned the wrong direction, but covered my error nicely by telling the daughter she should see at least a little of it. After we admired the reservoir and the ducks and the shady trees, I neatly turned back the direction we should have gone in the first place, and we arrived at the museum with no further ado, to spend several hours lost in museum-bliss.

Go listen to some good music: "Mutiny, I Promise You" from the album Challengers by The New P*rnographers. I'm not sure any huge stories came out of this trip. I liked the small ones.

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