When Google maps trumps the local

Driving directions from a sixteen year-old

Tooth Truth Roopa Vikesh
2 min readAug 17


Outside the school, a couple days ago. Photo by the author.

Today, I had to pick up my daughter’s classmate from her home so they could all attend a school fest together.

I hadn’t seen this girl’s home before and didn’t know it. I’d lived in that area for eight years, but that was before this daughter was born.

My daughter’s friend gave me her address, but no directions or landmark. When I asked her for a landmark, a shop, a memorial, anything, she said vaguely,

“There’s a boundary wall. I’m standing in front of it.”

What she missed saying was that the boundary wall was that of Tata Motors Hospital, one of the biggest in the state.

Tata Motors Hospital last year. Photo by the author.

I asked her, did you know that the boundary wall belonged to the hospital?

She said, “Yes, but I didn’t think of it.”

Boy, should she have led with that! Fortunately, she did give us her location over WhatsApp and Google Maps directed us there. We weren’t even late for school, though I had had a few tense moments wondering where the home might be.

School pick-up. Photo by the author.



Tooth Truth Roopa Vikesh

I don’t just create smiles, I inspire them! Dentist, mom—Jamshedpur, India.