Always know your bearings

Dear Max,

Knowing direction is, has and always will be important. We can’t, and shouldn’t, simply rely on our cell phones or GPS to always tell us where to go. What if it loses charge?

When Dad first started teaching me direction it was because he wanted me to be able to figure out how to find home if I was ever lost. He would have me memorize road names, landmarks and the direction that the roads ran. It started out simple – grandmas house is West, Telegraph runs North and South, and Detroit is East. 

Once I had a better handle on it my dad would ask me for directions and which way to turn. We used it like a game but I was learning invaluable lessons. When I was hit by a car while riding my bike in 8th grade, the insurance claims adjuster was surprised how well I knew the coordinates – the West side of the street, South side of the school, the van failed to stop at a stop sign driving East. While I may have been beat up and bruised, I was happy in the fact that I knew he wasn’t going to push me around to influence my statement by labeling me as just another mixed up teen.

I knew direction so well that by the time I started driving, I always knew where to go. My dad always had a way to get his point across, and I’m sure glad he taught me.




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