Many years ago, a cousin from a different city was visiting my family.
He went for a walk and came back telling me he got lost as soon as he walked around the corner.
I laughed and thought “who gets lost so easily?”.
Oh, my young self, so naive! If I could go back in time, I would ask myself to refrain from laughing, maybe that way, my luck would have changed…..
But I laughed and sealed my destiny: now I get lost, no matter where I am or where I go, I must get lost at least once a month, otherwise I’d be challenging my own luck.
This time, I got lost in Finland and I must say it wasn’t pretty.
How did it happen?
I was trying to go to the airport at midnight. As I already mentioned in a previous post, there hasn’t been a proper night in Finland for the past few weeks, so the sky was lighted and the weather was amazing: the perfect time to go for a midnight adventure.
I set up the route from my apartment to the airport on google maps and felt so relieved to live in a country with amazing public transport system and safe roads.
I walked for a few minutes, took the bus and followed the route on my phone. According to google maps, I must go down at a certain bus stop and walk for good fifteen minutes.
Although it seemed strange in my head and my common sense kept shouting that it simply didn’t make sense to walk 15 min. to go to the airport, I decided to follow the instructions on my phone, since I’ve learned I’m not a reliable source of directions.
So I did exactly what I had to do: went down on the stop showed on my phone, and start walking. The road was very clean and everything seemed fine, except that there were no cars, or people or anything, except for a two way road and the forest.
I started to feel nervous and even though I repeated a thousand times in my head that Finland is a safe country, I wasn’t feeling safe at all (maybe this Mexican habit of expecting the worst, I don’t know).
At the end of the road, there were only warehouses. No signs of the airport. It seemed the perfect set up of a horror movie. I was now freaking out, desperately trying to find the airport on google maps, but according to it, I was already there.
-I’m in the middle of nowhere, google maps!!! Not at the airport!!!!.
The only car I saw was a red van that turned back when it reached the dead end of warehouses. At that point I was simply losing it.
I tried to find the watchman of the place to ask for directions, but apparently Finland is so safe that is not even necessary to have someone to look for the buildings at night.
I was almost crying, feeling helpless and dumb. I started walking back to the bus stop, thinking about my options: there’s no Uber in Finland, no family at all, no friends with car. My best option was to get there before the last bus, and ask the driver for the right stop. Suddenly, a car passed me by, coming back after it reached the dead end. I prayed the guy driving was a nice person and started moving my hand, frenetically, hoping he would stop.
He did, and in no time, I was asking for directions. He told me he could drive me and after thinking for a few seconds, I decided I didn’t have too many options. So I did jump in and realized the car was a taxi! Ha!
After two minutes and ten euros, I was at the airport entrance feeling relieved.
What was a taxi driver doing two minutes away from the airport, at a dead end road? I’ll never know.
What I know is that for Finland being a safe country, and the taxi driver a good man, I’m so grateful; but most of all, I’m thankful for my luck: to put me in those situations, but also, to take me out of them, safe and braver.