Finding my way back to the Parisian hotel
Getting lost and finding your way again is a lot simpler today with downloadable Google maps and addresses in your contact list on your phone. You can't miss. Sure, that's a slight exaggeration.
Years ago , I never meant to get so turned around while wandering the back streets in Paris on my own. The map came out of my purse discreetly a little more often than I would have liked, and if someone was noticing this confused tourist, well, they never came to my rescue. Now, if I had been in Rome, that wouldn't have been the case. Locals were all over the place coming to my rescue even if I didn't need assistance.
There was a giant indoor market and I went in to make sense of my plight and after two or three attempts at talking with vendors who spoke little or no English, I gave up and returned to the sidewalk. There didn't seem to be any familar landmarks, nor were there any descriptive tall buildings to use as a marker.
Trying to keep my composure, I decided to stop at an outdoor cafe for an expresso and take a short respite before figuring out my next move. After the waiter came for my order, I pulled out the now crinkled map and spread it on the small circular table. Where am I right now? That took me a few moments to figure out and by then my expresso and cream-filled pastry were brought out. The waiter walked away immediately, and typical of so many servers, didn't want to get involved in chatter.
After a time when my head was bent over the map, I noticed a shadow covering it and two twenty something Americans with backpacks smiling. "Need help?" After explaining my predicament, the more outgoing of the two pointed down the street past the street intersection and waved his hand upward to the signage for my hotel. He laughed. I tried to cover for my stupidity with a dumb comment which I don't remember.
I settled in to my treat and and eventually walked up the street to my hotel without a care in the world.
Not one to give up on just a single bad experience, I have gotten lost many more times on my adventures.
Did I tell you about the time when my girlfriend and I lost our way in Rio de Janeiro, called a taxi and had the taxi driver chase us into the hotel screaming at the top of his lungs claiming he had been cheated out of the proper fare? The doorman handled it. He told us it is not customary for two women alone in a cab and the driver was trying to take advantage.