When a Wrong Turn Goes Right

Real Estate Agent with RE/Max Associates DE#R1-0003085 PA#RS347136

I traveled to West Virginia this week with my sister, Madeline, to meet up with another sister, Maureen. Somehow along the way when looking at Google Maps on my phone, we must have dropped a new destination pin. As the car climbed up over Cheat Mountain, we lost our cell signals but the map still had us moving forward, so on we went, not realizing how far off course we were.

Madeline saw it first, rising over the trees. It looked like a space ship, its elliptical shape looming large. Then we rounded a bend and we were in Green Bank, West Virginia, home of one of the world's largest radio telescopes. Of course I drove into the laboratory property... I mean, why not? Turns out they actually have a visitor center, but it was a photo op of the telescope that we wanted and when we were unable to get a good shot of it from that vantage point, we headed out.

Leaving the visitor center behind, we drove further and pulled into a pizza shop and general store to ask for directions. A wonderful young man named Wes helped us, laughing gently as I told him we didn't have a signal.

Wes gave us a sense of which direction we had to head, though he didn't know exactly how to get to where we needed to be, but he assured us that once we got to the other side of the mountain, we'd pick up a signal again. Off we went and we did, indeed, regain a cell signal on the other side of the mountain. We joked that the reason we had no cell signals in Green Bank was because they didn't want us broadcasting any sort of secrets from that valley.

Come to find out, our accidental discovery is a very cool place that is purposely devoid of cell signals. They even have a guy who drives around in a pickup truck, looking for errant signals.

Here's a link for a YouTube post about Greenbank: https://tinyurl.com/ya6zdxwc 

My lesson of the week? Don't be afraid of the wrong turns in life. Step off the beaten path. There are wonders around the bend.


Re-Blogged 1 time:

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Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning Monica Hill,

What a fabulous post with a great message. I'm so glad Kathy Streib featured your story in her "Ah-ha" moments for the week! You are so right "Don't be afraid of the wrong turns in life. Step off the beaten path. There are wonders around the bend!"

Oct 28, 2018 10:09 AM #5
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667, kat@thehousekat.com, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

What a fun "mistake!" I think it was meant to be that you took the "wrong" turn. Thanks for sharing!

Oct 29, 2018 03:25 AM #6
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome


Thanks to  Kathy Streib for sharing this wonderful post. Adventures can be found with "wrong" turns. Thanks for sharing.

Oct 29, 2018 06:57 PM #7
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Well that was quite an adventure, but what a neat detour. Love that photo!! Sounds to me like you had absolutely the right attitude about what happened rather than panicking or getting annoyed! It happens!


Oct 29, 2018 09:07 PM #8
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Good morning Monica Hill, in life, we will take wrong turns, the outcome is all up to us. Make the best of what you have, in your case, getting lost and not having cell signal was a great thing.  

Oct 30, 2018 07:45 AM #9
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 www.LizTour.com - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

You just drove by my parents' home, but you'd have missed it if you blinked coming through Bartow.  My mom is from Cass (just around the corner from Green Bank) and they retired to Bartow about 12 years ago.  It's a bit of an adjustment going into a no cell phone zone when I visit, but the scenery is amazing!  If you'd taken the bus tour of the telescopes they take you past the old ones and right up to the new ones.  It's a good tour!  Bill

Nov 01, 2018 06:01 PM #10
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Monica- - -Hmm,  about that road less taken. Oh those discoveries!  Thank you for the journey.

Nov 02, 2018 06:56 AM #11
Margaret Goss
Baird & Warner Real Estate - Winnetka, IL
Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate

This is exactly why when my husband and I traveled in France we never had a set itinerary. We had a general idea but no reservations, no plans - just started driving to see what life offered. It was fabulous -  just like your discovery.

Nov 02, 2018 07:21 AM #12
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Yes, there are magical things to discover whenever you travel.  We head in one direction and love getting off track to see the real countryside, etc.

Nov 02, 2018 10:06 AM #13
Elisa Uribe Realtor #01427070
Golden Gate Sotheby's International - Oakland, CA
Opening the Doors to California Homes -East Bay

That was quite an adventure!  Thank you for sharing this!

Nov 02, 2018 01:10 PM #14
L. Scott Ferguson
Ask4Ferguson - Your House-SOLD Name in Real Estate - West Palm Beach, FL
Sunny Florida Real Estate Professional

Wow!  looks like you found paradise!  What I like most is you didn't panic and made a crazy time a good experience!





Nov 02, 2018 01:21 PM #15
Tom Bailey
Margaret Rudd & Associates Inc. - Oak Island, NC

Monica, what a great story! Sounds like a lot of fun! It’s amazing how we let our phones drive everthing

Nov 02, 2018 10:35 PM #16
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

sounds like a glorious place to take a vacation.  Of course there is always wifi

Nov 03, 2018 10:04 AM #17
Stephen Turner
Gemcraft Homes (TriCorner Realty) - York, PA

love the message, and the photo you got! You never know what you may treasure you may find when you're accidentally off course.

Nov 03, 2018 10:09 AM #18
Scott Seaton Jr. Bourbonnais Kankakee IL Home Inspector
SLS Home Inspections-Bradley Bourbonnais Kankakee Manteno - Bourbonnais, IL
The Home Inspector With a Heart!

I can hear the Close Encounters theme music right now. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2JL0xABlrQ

Nov 03, 2018 10:58 AM #19
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

So your parents, Monica, named all of the children with a name starting with the letter M?

Love the fall colors in your photo.

I am all for taking that wrong turn and making new discoveries, but there is also a lot to be said for having some sort of agenda and not wandering around aimlessly, LOL. Otherwise, if you have no goals, how would you know when they were met?

Nov 03, 2018 09:41 PM #20
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

What a great story witha happy ending!  I have to check out the link!

it is always good to step out of the lines sometimes... open our eyes to things we would never see!  

Nov 04, 2018 01:18 AM #21
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Thank you for sharing the story. I would have panicked . 

Nov 04, 2018 02:56 AM #22
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Great post ! You never know what you'll find when drive off the beaten path !!!

Nov 04, 2018 07:27 AM #23
Liane Thomas -Top Listing Agent
BROKER Allison James Estates & Homes BRE 01885684 - Corona, CA
Bringing you Home!

What a great story! You and your sister will enjoy retelling this one for years to come. 

Nov 05, 2018 09:15 AM #24
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Monica Hill

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