Exits and Wrong Turns


Today’s Yesterday’s Daily Prompt is Wrong Turns.

When was the last time you got lost? Was it an enjoyable experience, or a stressful one? Tell us about it.

Somehow by getting up early, I’m a day late with The Daily Posts. As I start this, today’s post is not yet up. Here goes yesterday’s.

I’m not fond of getting lost. It feels too close to senility. Where am I? How did I get here? Oddly enough sometimes it’s not all that bad and maybe a little fun.

My daughter and I attended the Science & Engineering Festival at the DC Convention Center earlier this year. Parking downtown is a challenge and expensive. We took the Metro. Normally I’m fairly confident with my Metro skills. Look at a map, have a Trip Card, hop on, hop off. Boom, we’re there. Easy, right?

It’s all fine until you miss your stop on a crowded train. Trains do that to tourists so often, I almost think it’s on purpose. I feel sorry for them when a large group is trying to detrain together. I know there’s no way they’ll all exit before the doors close. Those doors stop for no one, so you better be out of the way. When it happened to us, I felt embarrassed. The doors seemed to close extra quickly that day. Really.

I thought it would be a simple matter of hopping off the train, crossing to the other side, and getting on a train going back to our desired station. But when we ran to the other side, we found it completely closed off. At this point I felt doomed. No train going back? We’re trapped!

Turns out they were doing repair work to the tracks on one side of the station. A commuter more familiar with this particular station told us we needed to go to the other side. “But that’s the side we just came from!” I explained to her as if that would fix everything. Was that panic that just spewed from my mouth?

Back we plodded. As we stood on the platform I realized that if we’d only stayed on our original train, it would have reversed directions from that very spot thus returning us to our desired destination with no effort at all on our part.

My daughter and I laughed as we realized how much panic and running around we’d done only to find that doing absolutely nothing would have been more efficient. Sometimes it’s the journey, not the destination.

Destinations aren’t bad either. The Convention Center was a short ride further. Once at the center, we were supposed to call friends so that we might meet up with each other. If you’ve never been, the Science & Engineering Festival is humungous. This year it took up the entire Convention Center — the area of several city blocks and two floors. How will we find our friends?

We called only to discover our friends were standing within a few yards of us. We saw each other and waved. Yay! Yay! And serious yay.

This was a day of things turning around — one we won’t quickly forget. And the Festival was fun too.

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Scott
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 10:23:11

    A very nice post that ends well. Things can get totally out of control when the operator/driver is located somewhere else. Barb and I were on the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) one day when a disabled lady was getting off. She consumed the allotted time and the door closed on her coat. Fortunately, I was close to the “panic” button and able to stop the train before he’d moved only a few inches. We will never know how it might have ended if I had not been able to reach the button.

    Reply

    • alightningbug
      Jul 04, 2014 @ 16:44:43

      That’s scary! Good thing you were there! All the close calls I’ve heard, it’s lucky more people aren’t hurt. I’m not sure if our Metro trains have a “panic” button. I should probably find out.

      Reply

  2. Trackback: Poem / Poetry – “Dreaming Of Darkness Retreating” | toofulltowrite (I've started so I'll finish)

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