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You can tell it to take the shortest route, and this will go on all roads including backroads, or you can tell it to take the fastest route and it will include highways. I would highly suggest you leave it on 'fastest route' setting.
You are in an area that the map does not support. If this is a new construction or street, highway etc it has not been updated on your map loaded on the device. You can check with Garmins website to see if a map update is available. If not you will have to wait until it is updated and released by Garmin.
Hmmm, you can find the update details per model, or get a pc, connect the garmin via usb and run the downloaded webupdater, which will take care of all the figureing out for you! If it thinks you are on the wrong side of the road or heading the wrong way it will try to get you to a turning point or exit, or either you told the machine to avoid certain roads check the navigation settings (wrench/navigation/avoid) make sure all is unchecked. Maybe you got to give the garmin a bit of time to get a gps fix before you hit the road, so it has time to find out where in the hell it is.
Verify that you have the correct basemap for the country that you are in. There are two maps inside a new Garmin. The basemap which shows all the major highways and mapsource which shows all the street. If you don't have the correct basemap try changing 'Navigation' Advoidance to avoid highways and Toll Roads.