We got lost without meaning to – Bijoyini Chatterjee


Getting Lost? from Bijoyini Chatterjee on Vimeo.

We got lost without meaning to. We were on our way to the ICA (Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston), looking forward to seeing some experimental short films. And google maps told us to take I-90 instead of I-93.
We did not have iPhones, nor smart phones nor a GPS. Just a piece of paper glaring at me, telling me to take an exit that did not exist.
The emotions I remember – confusion, frustration, disbelief that it took us one hour to go 7 miles. And perplexity that we missed the screenings that we had so been looking forward to!

The sense of feeling disoriented and uncomfortable was not, in itself, a loss. We are aware of where we were; always in Boston, a familiar city even if the immediate space were unfamiliar. What was a great loss was the consequences of the lost time — not being able to enter the theater late to see the films.

When we live our routine lives, we can project into the immediate future based on what we have experienced in the immediate past (We are hungry, we will eat dinner. It is 11pm. We will be going to bed shortly). Getting lost creates a break in our ability to anticipate and control our immediate future, the space around us and time. (What street should we take? How long is it going to take to re-orient ourselves? Have we been to this intersection before)? I do think that this discontinuity in our little life story is really the biggest impact of losing ourselves in the uber-connected age.