Life really isn't so difficult, if one just follows the instructions. My problem (and I'm pretty sure its not unique to me) is that I have never been able to get a a definitive copy of those instructions. When I was a kid, I was pretty sure there was a copy around somewhere, if I could only lay my hands on it. Other people seemed to know the rules, or at least acted as if they did, and so I thought there must be a set of instructions to be found. The older I've gotten, the less sure I am that that is so. There's a curious ambiguity in every set of instructions I've ever seen (like the arrows sometimes pointing to the right and other times to the left in the figure). And I'm more and more convinced that not infrequently it pays to throw out the instructions altogether. All of which suggests that maybe ambiguity and disorder are more than nuisances to be avoided, mistakes that someone is always making, or crosses to bear. Maybe there is something to be said for them. Maybe they are even something one can make use of and enjoy.

Imagine trying to find something you've always wanted: the promised land, maybe, or the one person in the whole world who can make you completely and everlastingly happy (or a large amount of money, if you'd rather). And now imagine that you have a map, and the thing you've always wanted is somewhere on that map, and all you have to do is go to the right place on the map and the wonderful thing is yours. Wonderful things, of course, are rarely found in the same place twice, and so to make the game more interesting (and realistic), lets arrange things so that what you want to find moves from place to place on the map. And let's make it a magic map, so that if you go to a particular place and don't find what you're looking for, the map tells you where it was on that particular turn. Got the rules? Ready to play? What's the best way to find what you're looking for in the shortest number of plays?