This I Believe

Melissa - Santa Monica, California
Entered on June 18, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

Simply Map-less

I have never really been a believer, but there is one thing that I believe in, I believe in maps

I do and forever will believe in using a map. Ever since I was little, my family and I have gone to San Diego every year. When I was five, we went to Sea World with my older cousin, Laura. It was bright and sunny August day. We saw every show and petted every animal. Later in the afternoon, my cousin and I were acting up and not paying attention inside the gift shop. We wandered off, in hope of finding the perfect stuffed animal and before we knew it, we were lost.

We left the gift shop, in hopes of finding my parents. We were alone; we were afraid, and we were lost. Both of us were too naïve and shy to ask an employee. We just sat outside, crying on a bench, with nothing more than a park map. We played with the map to cheer ourselves up. Suddenly, Laura noticed a “Help Center.” We were saved. We ran to the center, and there were my parents, just as worried as us. As we were walking, we talked about our mini-adventure and then I realized that it was more than dumb luck that we found our family, but rather a simple map helped us.

That was an extremely eye opening experience, especially for a five year old, and from that moment on, I have decided to always use a map. No matter where I am, whether I am simply at school or in a foreign country, I will always have a map in hand. I ignore the travel ways of my dad, who refuses to bring a map, and in turn I bring a map to know exactly where I am. There has been so many times in which my dad believes that he is the Superman of the Highway. Although he “claims” he knows where we are, we end up wasting a good hour of our time trying to look for the right road. I have spent too much time lost with my family. I always learn from mistakes, and of course I’ve learned a great deal from our “lost adventures.” In order to prevent the same ordeal that my family experiences during each vacation, I always insist on a map.

To this day, I never deny myself a map. It has saved me numerous times, and for that, I believe in always using a map.