Maps or GPS?

I trusted Lola (my GPS system) to get Kim and me to the hotel in Warsaw. She had done a fine job the year before, so I had no reason to doubt her abilities this year. I should have known something was not quite right when I could not locate the place I stopped at for lunch last year. The landscape was familiar, but doesn’t one suburb area look much like another especially when you are not from the area? Finally, we gave up and stopped for lunch. I just knew it would be in the next shopping center down the road, but it wasn’t. We never saw the center from my memory. I should have known, she was leading me down a different path.

We did need to take a small detour because of an accident, but Lola recalculated and put us on a road to Warsaw. We arrived just in time to pick up our registration packets and meet up with friends. Once we were in Warsaw, I had a guide to help me navigate the streets, so Lola was put away.

Saturday was going to be a day of exploration. Kim and I planned on driving north into Amish territory to view garden quilts and devour treats not to be missed (according to the natives of the area). With general directions, we set off to find Das Dutchman Essenhaus for breakfast. No help from Lola was needed. It was after breakfast when we encountered our first quandary.

We were able to locate our first garden quilt in the yard behind the Essenhaus. Of course the grass was drenched in dew, so our shoes were soaked walking to view the garden (no path was available 😦 ).

Bowtie garden at Essenhaus

Bowtie garden at Essenhaus

Now on to the next location, but where were we exactly? This garden was in the middle of a triangle on our map and the roads on the map were not labeled. mapWe plunged ahead looking to find something labeled on the map to give us a reference point. After a stop in a small shop, we were able to locate our second garden.

Waterwheel at Krider Gardens

Waterwheel at Krider Gardens

While studying the garden and our map, a man drove up to take photos of bikers on the trail. We politely asked for help to determine where in the world were we? It was when we mentioned we were seeking the Rise ‘N Roll Bakery, he became friendlier. His eyes lit up knowingly at the treat we were searching for. With his directions, we were on our way to begin our foray into overdosing on sugar.

Cinnamon Caramel donut, their specialty.

Cinnamon Caramel donut, their specialty.


Rise ‘N Roll was a hopping place and many donuts were being consumed. If you are in the neighborhood, this is a treat not to miss. I also bought a quart of pickled baby beets. Yum!

Sugar high set in and we were off to find our next quilt. Now that we had a point of reference, we were good for the rest of the morning.

Dutchman's Puzzle at Menno-Hof

Dutchman’s Puzzle at Menno-Hof

Goldie's Basket at Farmstead Inn

Goldie’s Basket at Farmstead Inn

But it was time to start the trek back to Missouri, and long hours in the car were ahead of us. First, we needed lunch and the locals dictated we must go to the Blue Gate for pie. Once again the recommendation was spot on. I enjoyed the seasonal Key Lime, while Kim savored every bite of the German Chocolate pie.

Lola was called into action as we wanted to head for home. Her idea was go to Chicago, then down Illinois to Missouri. I was not so sure of that, so we began to retrace our steps going back to Warsaw. She was not happy and constantly wanted to guide us away from our route. Finally I unplugged her and we broke out the backup map. (In retrospect, I suppose I should have listened to her.)

Once we were back to Warsaw, we gave her another chance. Her route seemed odd. Kim took out her iPad and used the map app. It seemed a better route. We followed the iPad. As I drove, whisperings in my mind began to tickle my memory. This was the route from the previous year. There was the shopping area I had eaten at last year!

Lola, I wonder if you need to retire. My faith in you has been compromised. Kim warned me that you were not always thinking clearly. I think I will have to analyze your route and the app’s route next time I plan to go somewhere.


21 thoughts on “Maps or GPS?

  1. The garden quilts are fascinating. I have not seen them before…and think this would make a nice day trip for us. I so enjoyed Lola…and how she might not be performing up to par. We call our GPS Charlotte…after a bossy friend. 🙂 She, too, might have to be retired…but we haven’t done that yet. Last year she took us to a ferry crossing instead of a bridge across the Mississippi. I kept telling Ray that I KNEW there was not a bridge….I being familiar with that area of Illinois. We laughed…and Ray changed Charlotte to leave out ferry crossings in the future. Thanks for this entertaining post…it really does make me want to take a cay trip to Warsaw, IN.

  2. Lola gives the kind of directions I would give – I have got to be the worse. Maybe she had other things on her mind. I love the pictures. I admit that I have never seen garden quilts before. Kathy was fascinated by them as well.

  3. Your slice made me laugh! A few years ago, I inherited my high tech brother-in-law’s car, with a million bells and whistles, including a GPS I called Gertrude. My boys loved Gertrude, but I hated her. She didn’t know about taking back roads to avoid rush hour traffic in Denver, she didn’t know about going down Monaco to see the tulips in spring or the leaves changing in fall, and she had a very very annoying tone of voice when I didn’t follow her directions. I wasn’t sad when I got rid of that car and Gertrude! I’ve never heard of the flower quilts, but I am soooo going to see them when I get to All Write! And try some of those desserts too! Yum!

  4. It figures that you needed a little bit of a human touch to find your way in Amish Country! Glad that you had a wonderful adventure, in spite of Lola’s struggles! 🙂

  5. First up, Lola is a fantastic GPS name. Second I think it’s hilarious how you personified and disagreed with Lola throughout. My GPS has gotten me places safely albiet a bit annoyed at times. I love her as a back-up. Occasionally she finds way better ways I never knew existed and that’s why she’s still around. This journey looks like the perfect combo of plan and spontaneity. Love it!

  6. I’m pinning this onto Pinterest on to my places I want to travel pinboard. I’ve got to see these quilt gardens!

    BTW: My GPS was named Daniel. He was quite lovely, but we broke up five years ago and I haven’t renamed my new one.

  7. Jaana says:

    I could just imagine being the OnStar person listening to your conversations with Lola! It would have made my day. Perhaps next time you will take OnStar with you and leave Lola at home?

  8. Haha…I loved reading about our misadventures with Lola! Here is the thing, she DID give you a great story so maybe she is just recalculating her career choices! I wouldn’t trade any of our trip even though we were pretty punchy when we finally reached St. Louis (okay actually Washington, MO). From now on I always want to travel with such a good storyteller as you are.

  9. We call our GPS “Karen.” And sometimes Karen steers us wrong! I think we are too dependent her — even if we KNOW we should go another way… Sometimes a good, old fashioned map is the best way to get your perspective. Your adventure sounded fun!

  10. Lovely pictures and a fun story! So funny the way you spoke directly to Lola. My mom and I did a weekend at Amish Acres a couple of years ago. The quilts had just been planted and weren’t in full bloom yet. But we enjoyed the plays at the Round Barn Theater. It is the permanent home of “Plain and Fancy” which runs every season along with the new plays. On our weekend trip, we saw two plays and got to meet with the cast and tour the whole theater and farm. And, like you, we enjoyed some wonderful food- the Thresher Dinner, served family style, has so much food it is impossible to eat it all.

  11. What beautiful pictures! Even though I live close to that area, I have never done the quilt “tour”. I have stayed at the Farmstead Inn when All Write used to have our institute there. I have a friend coming who would love that tour. Thanks for sharing it. (Don’t think I need Lola though!)

  12. I love how you personified Lola. She added to your adventure. I am so glad you were able to find Rise n Roll and the Blue Gate. The flower quilts are beautiful. I believe I will need to take my mom and go on adventure too.

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