Hills to Hawkesbury Living Magazine - - Memories -

I’ve heard tell of a per­son who has in­stalled two GPS’s in his car. One has a fe­male voice and is pro­grammed to ig­nore toll roads whilst the other with a male voice is not and of­ten se­lects the short­est or fastest way to a des­ti­na­tion. It can be quite funny lis­ten­ing to both as they ar­gue with each which way to go.

My wife has down­loaded onto her GPS the voice of Scot­tish co­me­dian Billy Con­nelly and if she hap­pens to miss a turn­ing or de­cides that she wants to take a de­tour or go a dif­fer­ent way to the in­struc­tions that Billy Con­nelly has given, his voice comes on to say “Turn around, and not just your­self, turn the whole car around. You would not be in this predica­ment if you had lis­tened to me in the first place”.

Now my GPS tells me where to go in a fe­male voice. It is com­fort­ing when trav­el­ing alone as I can imag­ine my wife sit­ting along­side telling me where to go. It can also be fright­en­ing when trav­el­ing along coun­try roads as I have ex­pe­ri­enced from time to time. You are out in the coun­try on a quiet drive. No ra­dio or CDs play­ing and have been trav­el­ing along a straight road for quite a while when sud­denly a voice would boom out “turn right in 500 me­tres”. Talk about dis­turb­ing the peace and quiet. It is al­most enough to bring on a heart at­tack.

Have you ever won­dered how the peo­ple be­hind the voices would know the name of ev­ery road on the map? And what do you do if you had not fol­lowed the in­struc­tions of the GPS and then its starts to re­con­fig­ure and by the time it has re­con­fig­ured you had missed the next turn­ing?

About a month ago I got a new GPS and I down­loaded maps of Aus­tralia and New Zealand on to it. You would think that the maps down­loaded would be fairly up to date. A week or so ago I was trav­el­ing south and be­tween Ger­roa and Berry where there has been a lot of road­works most of which is near­ing com­ple­tion. On look­ing at the map on the GPS it had me trav­el­ing across pad­docks when in fact I was ei­ther on the old Princes Hwy or on a new stretch of road. Luck­ily for me on my re­cent trip down south I knew part of the way to a lo­ca­tion I was go­ing to when my GPS said go straight ahead along the Princes Hwy then turn right to­wards HMAS Al­ba­tross. If I had fol­lowed the in­struc­tion on the GPS I would have missed the turn­ing. I was on the Pa­cific Hwy at the cor­ner of the road to­wards HMAS Al­ba­tross so there was no need to keep go­ing straight ahead.

Tech­nol­ogy can be great, but it can also be con­fus­ing. Re­mem­ber when it was not all that long ago just about ev­ery house­hold in ma­jor ci­ties had at least one street direc­tory. Be­fore head­ing out across the city you would look up the maps to try to de­ter­mine the best way to get to your des­ti­na­tion. I can fore­see that old street di­rec­to­ries would be­come col­lec­tor items that would be able to be bought or sold on sites such as e-bay. As many have found they can be use­ful in for his­tor­i­cal stud­ies where over the years you are able to see the growth or changes that have taken place in the var­i­ous sub­urbs or ci­ties. Imag­ine the roads that have been cre­ated over the past fifty odd years or so. The changes in some roads in re­nam­ing, road widen­ing or even be­ing re­placed by mo­tor­ways etc are yet other things you may no­tice. Street di­rec­to­ries are handy doc­u­ments for gaug­ing how ar­eas have changed over time.


If you have some great me­mories, or per­haps you be­long to a lo­cal com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tion and would like to share your or­gan­i­sa­tion’s his­tory or story with us then feel free to share your me­mories or ex­pe­ri­ences by writ­ing to 17 Rose St., Baulkham Hills NSW 2153 or email to ivor­jones@hill­sto­Hawkes­bury.com.au

The spell­ing on this sign is guar­an­teed to be in­cor­rect

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