Get lost! No, I’m not rudely insisting that you leave. I’m telling you to go and get lost somewhere. Anywhere really. It doesn’t quite matter because you won’t know where you are anyway.
I’m sure I could spend paragraphs waxing eloquent about the development of neural pathways or how finding your way home can fight dementia and likely there would be some study to back up my outlandish claims. But instead of being one of those posts, I’m going to tell you about the first time that we got lost. So without further adieu, I present to you our tale of getting lost in Mark Twain National Forest.
It was a dark and dreary Sunday afternoon. (Actually it was a bright sunny one which made it a perfect day for going on a drive, but who starts a story like that?) Four weary travelers were racing across the landscape, (again… not weary and not really racing. It was a Sunday Drive, after all). They had traveled so far (only about 50 miles) and had driven so long (about 45 minutes, you really don’t have to go that far to enjoy a Sunday Drive) when eventually a road gleamed off in the distance. It was a simple plain dirt road crossing a small creek with an old church in the corner (that’s all true, I have no comment there).
Aaron looked at his wife (with the most loving yet concerned eyes) and as if through telepathy asked, “What should we do?” (We are very loving and close after all, we hardly have to speak any more in fact. We finish each others…) Unsure of themselves, they decided to press onward across the creek. Miles they drove (well maybe two) until they came to yet another fork. One road veered off the the left up a large mountain (Keep in mind, this is Missouri so we’re quite generous with the term mountain). The other continued straight and looked the more reliable road. It stopped at a dead end:
Out of fear for our lives (actually very little fear, just respect for the “No Trespassing” sign we had just encountered) they quickly made a u-turn with as much skill and precision as a Hollywood stunt driver. (I think it was 9 points. We drive a mini-van. Just let me pretend I’m in an action movie, okay?) And took the road up the “mountain.” (There. Does that make you mountain purists happy?) The road was quite steep and at several places they weren’t sure if the van would make it as the tires spun fruitlessly. (That is only a slight exaggeration. It was a very steep road.) But finally they made it to the top and found that the road continued for quite a distance.
They drove and they drove and realized that there were no road signs. The speed limit picked up but they were still unable to find Highway Y which would take them home. Finally after about 10 miles… (Oh, you want me to comment? No this part is all true.) a small green sign read “Welcome to Iron County.”
Aaron, the wise and geographically knowledgeable man that he was knew that something was not right. For in his youth he had traveled to Iron County. (A few years ago, actually. Our Honeymoon was there. I think they have a Blue Grass festival and a Lutheran Church that temporarily served as a field hospital for Union Soldiers in the Civil war…You know, this sounds interesting! We may have to go back some time.) Armed with only his memories, Aaron bravely turned around and returned back the way he came. After a few miles, they found that they had been on highway Y the entire time and were home in about 45 minutes.
Now wasn’t that a brave and harrowing tale? Oh, it wasn’t? Then I guess I’ve made my point. We got lost and the world kept spinning just long enough for us to make our way back home. In the mean time, we had some great conversations, took some great pictures. We got to see a part of Missouri we have never seen, and Clarence even lead us in a stirring round of “No More Monkeys Jumping On the Bed.” Which is always a fine use of a Sunday afternoon.
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