These days we live some 170 miles from London, but my husband and I are Londoners, we know our way around London, well most of it. As it happens we just didn’t know the bit we were travelling to on Saturday. We know our way there, in fact the car could probably find its own way since we’ve done the journey so often. We know that we use either the A1 or the M1 to get there depending on which side of London we want to end up. I just wish our satnav, Emily, understood that too.
From the moment we left our drive, she insisted that we take the A1. My husband, driving, was quite calm at first, just muttering ‘yes we know, thanks Emily’ the first couple of times she asked us to ‘do a U turn’. We saw her recalculate, but she was still insisting on us ‘doing a U turn’ even when we approached the M1, by which time both my husband and I were yelling back ‘For God’s sake, we’re taking the ******* M1 Emily’. Yep, we were still addressing our satnav by name as if she could hear us. Both of us.
We didn’t name her Emily, it was the name of the mechanical voice which tells us to ‘go st-ray-eight’ or, more frequently ‘do a U turn’. But she was instantly treated as another being in the car, getting thanks when she found the right place first time and ridiculed when we thought (usually incorrectly) that she was taking us the wrong way. She is often the receipient of the full force of my husband’s ire, particularly when he takes the wrong turning thinking that he’s already gone 500 yds. It has become apparent that neither of us have the slightest inclination of what 500 yards looks or feels like. We dither about in the middle of heavy traffic
‘does she mean this one?’
‘Oh **** it wasn’t, she’s bloody recalculating!’
‘Do a U turn..’
When are they going to come up with a system that tells us to ‘follow the white car’? Or ‘Not this one, the next one’ or, for my sake ‘LEFT, LEFT, LEFT…YOU’RE GOING RIGHT LOVE’. When will ‘Do a U Turn’ become ‘Oh dear, you seem to have gone the wrong way duck, any chance of turning round somewhere?’
Until that time, Emily will have to take the brunt of our curses and our disobedience I’m afraid. To paraphrase…. ‘This lady’s not for U turning.’