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Good Googling!

By Barbara Gookin

Ever zoom in on Google Maps and find weird stuff? Sometimes a landmark, and even our own personal stuff, looks weird and otherworldly when we take a macro view from satellites in space. Take a look at the photos posted here. Do you know where these are? These are images of Nantucket, somehwhere. We all know these locations but might not recognize them from this perspective. It might take a minute or two, but you'll probably figure it out. (Reply with your guesses in the comment section below.)

Google Maps' satellite images are not updated in real time. They are several months or several years old. I once took a look at Google Maps to see if I could locate my own car. This was years ago. I hadn't lost my car, I just thought it would be fun to see it from satellite view and figure out where I was and what I was doing when the image was preserved in time. I started by looking at an image of the driveway where I was living at that moment, and worked my way back in time to the various places I'd lived on the island. I have moved a lot. I was looking for my little red Honda, the car I have now. I couldn't find it anywhere, but I noticed there was a familiar looking white car in one of the driveways...

There it was, my little white Volkswagon Cabriolet from yesteryear, where I parked it... two year-round rentals ago. I  burst into laughter upon seeing it because the image instantly brought back so many memories. I didn't live in the same place and didn't even have the same car anymore! It was funny though, seeing that old convertible. I thought about the good times I had in that car, and the bad. That car was a deer-magnet. I recalled one fall day while driving along Cliff Road, a deer suddenly charged out of the bushes and leapt into the side of my car. I hadn't even seen the deer, as it was not in front of me. When I heard the loud bang, I honestly thought something had fallen from an airplane and landed on me. In the rearview mirror, I saw a deer that slowly stood up, shook its head and then scampered away. I was sure it would not survive. I couldn't get out of the car. My driver's side door was smashed and wouldn't even open. I was left with a mangled door and a side panel to repair, at a cost of about $1200. The first time it happened I was so upset for the poor deer. But, it happened again. The second time, I just couldn't believe it. This was the same area of Cliff Road and it caused the same damage to my car. When this happened a third time, I had no sympathy for the deer, and immediately got rid of that car.

So, go to Google and search "Nantucket, MA" on Google Maps. Then, zoom all the way in and look around to see what island memories get stirred up. See how strange everything looks from way up above. Our towering lighthouses are merely shadows of themselves. Even the rubble of the former Great Point Lighthouse is visible under water. A little farther north, seals look like confetti on the beach at Great Point. You might even find your own car parked in your driveway, or at the grocery store, or driving on Cliff Road. Watch out for deer!