Lost in Amerika

signSmall town Czech Republic … I’m finding my way along guided by the GPS in my car. I brought a map but it is a spiderweb of roads linking unfamiliar places so I’m not getting much use from it. The place names are generally quite foreign to me so I am totally trusting the nice lady in my GPS who tells me when and which way to turn. I am driving from Pilzen to Votice to begin my Workaway assignment at a farm near Otradodice a small grouping of farms and homes outside of Votice. It’s about a hundred kilometers (give or take) across the countryside through many towns and villages.

detourEverything is going great up until about the last four kilometers where I encounter a construction zone and the highway is closed and blocked. There are no detour markers. The GPS offers no help with this. I guess left and head up a hill to look for a way around. The nice lady tells me several times to make a u-turn, but I decide to take the next promising looking right turn to see if I can cut across the countryside and rejoin the highway beyond the blockage. The nice lady finally stops telling me anything, and I arrive at a dead end. Now it is time to follow her advice and make that u-turn.

disappearing roadI backtrack the route to the construction barriers and head the only other direction possible (other than heading back toward Pilzen), heading up a steep hill into a forest. The nice lady tells me a couple of times that I should u-turn, but soon stops that and she then starts instructing me to “prepare to drive straight ahead.” Not only am I prepared, I’m downright encouraged as I take this to be a sign that there is going to be a way around the roadblock. Then I come to Amerika.

Amerika is a gathering of homes on a hillside. I have no idea about the origin of the name for this place nor could I find anything about it with a quick internet search. I round a sharp curve and head up a steep hill. The nice lady still seems happy with my direction as I reach a tee intersection at the top … see tells me to go left. The road starts shrinking a bit and the pavement begins to get progressively sketchy before disappearing all together. The nice lady tells me to keep going, but I’m second guessing her by now. This is looking more and more like someone’s backwoods driveway.  I finally reach a point where the road is barely wide enough for the car and branches overhang on one side.  I haven’t seen a soul in Amerika.

signEven though the nice lady seems perfectly happy with my progress, I decide that I am lost in Amerika. It’s time to turn around and work on plan C, which turned out to be to carefully run the roadblock. That makes the nice lady happy, as that is the way she told me I should go in the first place.  Smart ass!

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