I am proud to say that I am old enough to remember life before the internet, mobile phones and mainstream GPS and navigation systems.
Even people born but a few years after me will have a completely different relationship to technology.
I only got a mobile phone when I bought my first car aged 17. The internet was still in its infancy and emails were mainly sent on an intranet basis where it was actually easier just to talk to the person you want to communicate with.
When you were going to meet a bunch of friends at a certain place at a certain time…. you just had to show up and wait. The only thing you might be able to do to check when your friends would be arriving was to find a public payphone, ring their parents and to find out what time they had left home.
There were no smartphones and there were no apps with navigation and maps.
You just found your way around using landmarks and the positioning of the sun at a given time on the given day of the year.
Don’t believe me or feel that I am exaggerating the past… let me share a little story with you.
I was in my early 20s and dating a girl who lived a few hours away. We had met whilst skiing in the French Alps and seemed to hit it off very well.
I was planning on heading down to Newquay in Cornwall for a long surf weekend. Naturally I asked if she would like to join up as she also surfed.
She informed me that she would be staying with her parents in Devon on the day I was driving down if I could come by and pick her up.
I had a look in my father’s UK road atlas book from the 1970s and saw that her Village was merely 10 miles from the main road I would be driving.
On the day in question after my usual fight with putting my surfboard inside (!!!) my Renault Clio, off I drove from London. I decided against taking the road atlas as to be honest it didn’t show half of the roads which had been built in the 35 years since it was published.
For those who may have undertaken the journey… I chose to drive the A303 as opposed to M4 – M5.
All was going smoothly. A bit of traffic but nothing too bad. Boom! Then came the road closed sign. I knew I still had roughly 50 kilometers until where I would pick her up from. Seeing that the suggested diversion route was backed up with traffic, and not wanting to keep my love interest waiting, I decided to wing it.
Observing the sun in the evening sky I could estimate where West would be. And knowing that I needed to travel South West I could take the small country lanes instead.
My plan was going to perfection until the sun set.
Feeling ever so slightly deflated I called up the girl and told her of my predicament.
She laughed and asked what was the name of the last Village I had driven through. I told her and then explained that I was parked up by three quite distinct trees on a tiny country lane.
“Are you joking?” She replied. “Can you see a farm Gate 50 metres to your right? Take the road 100 metres later to the left and my parents house is the third one down.
Two important things from this story.
1. It didn’t work out with skier surfer girl, but if it had I would not be here adventuring with your dogs.
2. Do not always rely on technology to get around. Adventure is always found in the unknown. Read nature’s signs and learn to navigate using your senses. I actively avoid using navigation apps uness it is an emergency.
When your dogs and I get lost in the woods the adventure is finding our way back out.
Doggies: Vali, Ronja, Max, Ferd and Wilma
Doggies: Banipal, Punky, Tesla, Lucy and Lucy
Doggies: Mari, Nola, Bella, Lykke, Pippi and Amazona (2 walkers)
Doggies: Sara and Isak
Doggies: Ville, Fant, Eddie, Nansen and Hedda
Have a lovely evening with your doggies and we are back again in the morning for more dogwalking in Oslo nature.
Christina, Linn, Veronica, Alex and Matt