It was a crisp, sunny day in Washington, D.C. when I left the conference.
Climbing into my rental car, map in hand, I was confident of my journey home.
It was a pre-GPS era back then, and I had received my directions before leaving the hotel from what I thought was a trusted source.
They were simple: a straight road and then I would see the entrance onto the highway that would take me home.
I began to notice that something wasn’t quite right when my straight road narrowed into a residential area with no highway entrance in site. I stopped and asked a mail carrier whose cryptic directions led me through an alleyway and on to some embassy office buildings. From there, I hailed a man and explained my plight. In a thick accent, he told me that he was not from the area and couldn’t help me.
My pulse quickened, and my heart thudded in my chest as I realized what was happening – I was lost! Panic set in for me, and a strange sense of hysteria accompanied it. I had no way of calling anyone and didn’t feel that returning to the hotel was an option. The hugeness of the city closed in on me. I parked on a curb and sobbed – certain I’d be lost forever.
That’s when my angel came.
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