(If only they made sat-navs for the countryside)

You don’t have to wrestle with Tom-Toms

As I’ve struggled with maps through the years

Folding the bastards back into shape

As the wind whips them up round your ears

And then when you’ve got them all folded

Your hands all frozen with cold

You try to track down your location

But you find that you’re just on the fold

You’re either just here by the forest

Or maybe just there by the dam

Or just on the edge of this mayonnaise splodge

Or this patch of old strawberry jam

And then when you think that you know where you are

(A remarkably rare situation)

You suddenly realise the map’s upside down

And you’re filled with an air of frustration

What you thought was a track is a river

That railway’s the stream that we crossed

That windmill’s a turbine, that castle’s a pub

I’ll confess it – we’re totally lost!

What I need when I walk is a Tom-Tom

With a voice that is soothing and calm

To guarantee geographic safety

To prevent me committing self-harm!

“Take a left turn down by the river

“Cross the bridge, cross the field, climb the stile

“There’s a place you can stop for a picnic

“In a little over a mile”

With a satellite tracking my movements

I’ll know just where I am to the metre

I never will be bewildered again

My ramblings will be that much sweeter

I’ll never need scramble down loose banks of scree

Or climb up near-vertical faces

I’ll never discover the shady wee nooks

Or those off-the-beaten-track places

But where is the sense of adventure in that?

Is a Tom-Tom too cosy perhaps?

It’s so much more fun when you haven’t a clue

I’ll maybe just stick with my maps. 


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