My husband says I am geographically challenged.
Mind you, he also tells everyone that I am a ‘techno giant” (aka technologically challenged) and that most things I cook are “something surprise”. The surprise is that it rarely is anything like the recipe (there was one time when I cooked something with apricots and the surprise was there were no apricots.)
He makes these derogatory remarks in the most loving of ways and there is a part of me that thanks him for softening the blow when others discover their germ of truth.
Take for example a recent conversation with a fellow cancer survivor who told me she is going to climb Mont Blanc as part of a Breast Cancer Network challenge. The intrepid trekker said she was unsure whether to stay on after the trek, given that once she left the group she was on her own.
“Look. It’s not as if a plane fare to New Zealand is all that much. You could probably return any time and see some more of the country,” I said.
She looked momentarily confused and it wasn’t until I got home and asked he-who-knows-all-things that I realised that I had done it again. I had drawn a blank on the Switzerland location and confused Mont Blanc with Mount Cook. I mean mountains aren’t always black and white, even if they are “blanc”. I decided not to reveal my full ignorance. The similarity between mountains with one syllable is undeniable and therefore easily confused.
I have been at the laughing end of things geographical before. Like the time when we got off the tour bus in Morocco to feed the monkeys. So delighted was I that I exclaimed (rather too loudly) that I felt like I was in Africa. I may have flown there from Spain, but I realise now that the bedouin camp on the Sahara should have provided a hefty and undeniable clue as to my location.
Now that I think about it, social studies at school was never my strong point. There was one exam where I answered Captain Cook for every question, because he seemed to be the focus of most of our study. I scored one out of 20 and I was quite delighted actually with the result.
Had the trekker been going to Mount Cook, I could have got a second point.
– Linda Muller