My Story is from India where I am based out of.

I had gone with my family for attending a distant cousin’s wedding. It was also an opportunity to visit the ancestral home of my Dad. This is located in a small town named Deoband in the Indian State Uttar Pradesh

We reside in Mumbai, Maharashtra which is almost 2 days of driving away (with breaks). This story does not lead to epic screw ups in the drive to or back from this place. The family just doesn’t trust my driving over such long distances and so off we went in a train.

While we were attending the wedding, we were also planning to renovate our home here in Mumbai and Deoband is situated near another town named Saharanpur which is a hub for furniture.

The plan was to drive to Saharanpur in a Hyundai i10 (a very, very small car. An important detail) with a person who knew the way and a reliable shop, book the furniture which would then be nicely packed and delivered to Mumbai and return back. The journey to the furniture shop was uneventful apart from the shitty roads with potholes the size of the car we were driving.

Still the car was a blast to drive and owing to its lightweight construction it was easy to shift into upper gears without breaking a sweat. Once at the shop, we finalized the stuff, paid up a retainer and then it was time to return. This is when we realized that the person who brought us there was not planning the return trip.

Out came my phone and thanks to my awesome foresight, I had starred the return address on map. Google Maps shows a way, we discuss major junctions and off we go. Disclosure: While the person was telling the major junctions I was glazing over them as I had GMaps with me. Now I recalled the road being horrible and it was a pleasant surprise that Google had found a much smmother route. Take that you stupid local.

What we did not know at the time is that the overlords at Google decided that we explore some back roads for them. Makes sense as people in that area do not use navigation. It is the old way of stopping and asking for directions. So there we were going through forests & over bridges built primarily for cattle to cross (implying very very narrow, the important detail comes into play here). At one point it even had us driving through what we in India call ‘angan’ basically open space in the center of the home of some guy. Luckily that ‘angan’ was not enclosed by walls.

The little Hyundai managed to achieve it all. It crossed the forest dirt tracks. It crossed that rather flimsy bridge. And it even managed to drive through somebody’s home without either breaking down or breaking anything else.

The only thing that broke that day was my trust in Google Maps ability to direct properly in India. Now when I search a route on it, I see the entire route and see if it’s again pulling that trick or not before starting.