I used to find inconspicuous spots to park my car so that I could ‘hide in plain sight’. The idea was to blend in without attracting direct attention. One example would be the upper deck of a mall parking lot, where there is less foot traffic but not completely abandoned. Another might be the out edges of a strip-mall parking lot where you’re likely to be next to the cars of just employees, who rarely exit and enter their cars, but not customers.
Sometimes I would sleep, or do drugs, but mostly I wanted to be alone with my depression. Always wary of people (and officials) passing by, I would rotate spots to avoid sitting in one place for too long. This is just one technique, coupled with driving aimlessly, that always ‘worked’.
As a parent today (my kids are toddlers, so I have fourteen more years before they’ll be driving) it seems that technology will eliminate this ‘hiding technique’. I can easily give my son or daughter a smart phone with GPS tracking enabled, and view exactly where they (or their phones) are at all times. I predict this will become even more ubiquitous and advanced over the next decade.
But really, all that GPS tracking does is tell me where my child is; not what they are doing, or what they are thinking. For me it still boils down to trust. Do they trust me enough that they can come to me if they need help?
That’s a really tough question to answer. I mean, I’m sitting here, blogging on the internet, being as open as I can be. I’m the same way at home. I go out of my way to make my kids feel comfortable with me. Except, adolescence by its very nature often means hating, rebelling, and mistrusting your own parents.
I’ve written before that I have no fears about parenthood. On second thought, that’s not true. I fear my own kids’ teenage years. I don’t want them to feel like I felt.
The other day I saw a young girl, probably in her twenties, parked in one of ‘my spots’. I’ll never know what she was doing, but I’ll never feel like it was nothing.