Day 19 – Lost

Don’t let those faces fool you into thinking that anyone knows what’s going on!

A few years ago my sister was visiting because my nephew got married and was in town for a reception. After the reception I whisked my sister away to come and play with me and Mark for a few days. As it turns out, Mark and Julie have the exact same sense of direction.

At this point in time, Mark and I had only owned our lots off the grid for a short amount of time and were still in the process of learning where all the trails led. We went through a muddy, muddy bog on our way to the landing that overlooked the big lake and dam. I had explained to my sister that when mud puddles cropped up, people would ride their ATVs around them, thus creating new paths.

As we were on our way back from the landing to the five way stop I realized that Julie and Mark were no longer behind me. There is that instantaneous moment of panic when I realize that they are lost in the woods, we have no cell phone reception, and it is getting close to dark. So I back tracked. All the way back to the landing then all the way back towards the five way stop. Nothing. Not a trace! It was about this point that every movie I’ve ever seen where people start disappearing into nothingness while wandering aimlessly through the woods started haunting my mind.

There is one path that veers off away from the muddy bog and I decided to go down that trail to see if they were there. I got half way down the trail and there was a very steep hill. The bike I had at the time had no brakes so I avoided hills that I was unfamiliar with like the plague. The bike also had no reverse so I avoided tight spots as fervently. In order to get turned around and head back to the bog I had to create a new trail through the woods (no reverse and all that goodness).

As I closed in on the muddy bog path I spotted Mark. No Julie. Just Mark. And I may or may not have reacted a little sharply (read: went into full-on bitch mode). After he was able to speak, he informed me that she was safely at the five-way stop, so off we headed. Ah, the relief when I saw her sitting on her bike waiting for us, and laughing! She was having the time of her life! Well, maybe not the *ultimate* time of her life, but she was having a blast!

She explained what had happened. She remembered me saying that the big mud pits had multiple trails around them as people worked to circumvent getting their bikes buried in the mud. As I maneuvered through the mud she took the cleanest looking trail to get around the pits, with Mark following right behind her. As she drove she noticed me getting further and further away, and realized that she was on a whole new trail and NOT on a round about “bypass” path. She stopped and turned to Mark, “Do you know where we are?” Dazed and confused as ever he goes, “Not a clue!” Comforting, no? He followed that up with a very confident, “But I’m sure this trail will dump us out somewhere.” And off they went. The two members of my family with the worst sense of direction ever, lost in the woods, but certain the trail would dump them out somewhere familiar.

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It was on this particular trip that I discovered that most trails lead to the five way stop. In spite of the moments of distress I felt when two of my favorite people were missing, we had a GREAT time riding and playing! Fun times. Fun times.

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