Ok, so I’m an hour late. Sue me.
We are lost. I say Dad, Dad, Dad over and over again to get his attention, but my father is too busy shielding his pride and the steering wheel. Did we make a wrong turn or did we just have bad directions? I tend to trust instructions coming from satellite images and ever-improving route calculators, but you never know. I started saying Dad again, but only my mother paid attention enough to swat my words away with an annoyed wave.
“Stop chewing your lip. It’s such a bad habit,” my mother said, so I stopped chewing my lip for five seconds. The car screeched into a turn, then another. Around and around we went in the same loop, going many miles yet going nowhere at all.
“Dad. We are lost,” I shouted matter-of-factly.
“Just read me the damn directions, the whole way through this time,” Dad insisted, so I did. Every damn direction. Rosewood Avenue likely did not exist, because no matter how many times we were supposed to pass it, we would find ourselves looping around instead. The couple sitting outside for their meal had surely recognized us from the last ten times we passed by, and each time they gave us increasingly puzzled glances.
“I FOUND IT!” my mother screeched, and suddenly we were all tumbling inside the car like pieces of luggage as the little vehicle tried its best to keep up with the sharply turned wheel. The invisible Rosewood Ave had become very visible indeed, and in no time we were parked, checked in, and bouncing on rock-hard hotel beds. It wasn’t long before we were out of there and in the heart of the city, passing by the elusive Rosewood Ave and peering into the next street. Business chatter and tinkling glasses were all around us as we made our way down street after street, taking it all in. Was there somewhere we had to be? I couldn’t remember. Dad turned to me and teasingly imitated my voice.
“We are lost. How terrible.”
“No,” I answered, realizing for the millionth time that day that we really had no place to be. How could we be terribly lost if there was no place we were supposed to find? I looked around again, feeling much less stressed. Shops looked friendlier, restaurants smelled more delicious, and the vacant expressions on the faces of passersby turned from unfriendliness to determination and joy. “We are purposefully and wonderfully lost. And I’m finally on vacation.”
I smiled and made my way into a little French restaurant spilling soft jazz and drunken former customers, and my parents did the same.
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