I’m one of those people who hates being lost. Whether it’s deciphering meaningless symbols on a foreign public transit map, searching for a lost object, or playing around with a pesky Rubik’s Cube: I do not like guessing. I despise the feeling of not knowing the answer. There is no such thing as an educated guess. If you’re guessing, then you still don’t actually know the answer. I’ve never understood why scientist enjoy testing and re-testing hypotheses or why math teachers always advise students to ‘think it through’ and ‘figure it out for yourself’. As if students enjoy the feeling of pure stupidity.
I have this theory that there is only one right way to do things and countless wrong ways. When I find myself doing something the wrong way, I find someone who knows the right way. And I’ll ask any number of agitating questions about every detail of the situation until I know exactly how to fix it.
I usually avoid doing things wrong by following the lead of those who know how to do things right. So far it’s worked well. But there are certain times when I have to figure things out alone. This weekend I lost my passport in the Dublin airport. Turns out some kind soul returned it to the lost & found. But I had to go back to the airport to get it. This was my very first question to the airport alone. Usually I tag along with friends who’ve learned the times and locations of the airport buses. But when I tag along, I remember nothing. I get from point A to point B without every realizing what happened in between. Subsequently I had no idea which bus to choose. I finally found the airport bus after walking up and down O’Connell street where a lot of the city buses run.
As we neared the airport I realized I had no idea where lost & found was located in the airport. I immediately found the information desk inside baggage claim. I was directed to a building across the street. Inside this building was a cafe and nothing else. There were overhead signs pointing to 3 things: ‘cafe,’ ‘bathroom,’ and ‘left luggage.’ I disregarded each as impertinent to the quest for my passport. I spent 15 minutes walking around the tiny building until I decided to ask the cafe owner about lost & found. Turns out ‘left luggage’ means luggage one has left behind. It is not a collection of luggage located to the left.