GPS Systems And Navigational Equipment

I heard a story of a man who once bought his wife a GPS system for her car so that she would know exactly what time she would need to leave wherever she was in order to get home in time to have dinner ready and waiting when he walked in the door. After I got over my initial ??and shes still with him?? experience, it did occur to me that GPS and navigational systems have the capacity to truly change our lives in manners such as this, hopefully with more positive results. I first learned to use these navigational aids on the water where in my opinion, I thought they belonged. The invention of personal GPS systems for pleasure sailors and cruisers made a lot of sense to me. In fact, since learning a sextant was so difficult for me, I thought that it was the answer to my directionally challenged life.

When they introduced these gadgets for the interior of the car, I met the idea with mixed emotions. First off, I couldnt understand why you would need such a device in order to get from one place to another. That is what a map can do for you. Being lost is very frustrating to me. Since our little family tends to run out and have impromptu excursions from time to time, it really isnt all that surprising that we find ourselves lost more often than not. Just because we know the general direction of one particular state doesnt mean we can find the small town were looking for or take even the shortest route there.

When Mapquest came into my life, I thought this was all the answer I would ever need. It no longer mattered if we knew where we were going, we could just hop in the car and follow the directions and we would end up there. While this has turned out to be the case more often than not, there has been a few times where these directions took us into some very interesting areas.

I was just tremendously grateful that we didnt end up having any sort of mechanical failure while we were exploring these very interesting areas. Despite our frequent impromptu travels, our hesitant attitudes toward getting out and asking for directions, and our short tempers when it comes to other peoples incompetent driving ability, I was still highly resistant to any type of GPS or navigational system entering either one of our cars. Like I said, thats what a map is for, right? One day, not all that long ago, I had a sudden change of heart. Out of nowhere I decided that these navigational pieces were actually indispensible to our lifestyle and our love of road trips.

I wanted one. I wanted one in each car despite the fact that we only used one car for traveling. I wanted one in my car despite the fact that it is really more of a back up car that leaves the house once a day for errands and for my daily trip to the health club. Of course, the rest of my little family couldnt fathom my change of heart since I had been so completely sure that we didnt need one of these gadgets and that I had even once preached about the loss of spontaneous side trips and serendipities along the way. So finally, I confessed.

These things can help you avoid traffic. If theres one thing I cant stand is sitting in bumper to bumper traffic because there is an accident on the other side of the road! What is that? Is our need to peer into someone elses tragedy that strong that traffic can be backed up for five miles because everyone needs to take a moment and get their 50 cents worth of tragedy? I mean come on! Let the people who are suffering at the moment have a little privacy and respect. How much do you want people to gawk at your mishaps? Avoiding traffic is my number one motivator for the addition of a navigation system to our cars.

And it gets you out. When you find the exit, it can get you back into the travel mode faster than blinking, and you still get to see those cute little towns you would have otherwise missed. These gadgets are perfect for road rage suspects. Get them out of the traffic and everyones life becomes so much nicer.

Susan is a regular contributing writer to This viewpoint is brought to you in conjunction with trade leads from the Navigation and GPS Equipment area of our Business to Business portal.

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