The planets aligned today, creating a scenario that saw me engaged in an activity known as Geocaching. For those of you unfamiliar with this particular activity, it involves downloading of an app to something like a mobile phone or tablet, deciding which Geocache spot to go to and then go.
So my good lady wife got herself a new mobile last week and apart from filling it with music and playing the Simpsons Tapped Out she decided it might be nice to have a go at Geocaching.
The youngest daughter thought this was an awesome idea and before long we found ourselves in a patch of woodland near to where we live.
Dear daughter was thoroughly enthused to be out looking for hidden things…
…Like Tomb Raider.
She then decided she might like to do the same job as Lara Croft as her job is cool…
apart from the tigers.
Sad to say once we’d explained that most archaeologists don’t actually fight tigers and international baddies, her attention waned. Unfortunately we were deep into Gruffalo territory by then and The Wife managed to get the app to work.
Initially we were directed here…
But as you can see (in spit of the blurry image) this is more like the kind of place you’d find a corpse than a geocache so we moved on.
DD spotted this suspicious object and insisted it was exactly the thing we were after.
But it turned out to just be a piece of trash with nothing in side apart from a couple of ants.
With much head scratching and cries of ‘It’s over here, it has to be! we turned round and managed to connect the app. Trudging up a dirt track we were abruptly alerted to the fact we were really close.
I dived into the woods immediately only to find a few discarded chunks of wood and…
Our first geocache! Under this fake rock was a plastic bag with a little dog and the log list in it.
Egged on by this overwhelming success we picked the next one and set off on a yomp to find the new cache.
Which we did after about five minutes of searching. This one was a bit bigger and had an array of goodies inside. Signed and re-buried, we took off for the next spot.
After about half an hour of trudging and a mad dog encounter (Elvis! Eeeelllvissss!) we came to a rough picnic spot next to a polluted pond which was once part of the Whitstable-Canterbury railway, using the water to help power a steam ‘winding engine’ as the locomotive ‘Invicta’ wasn’t powerful enough.
After a good ten minutes searching, the app led us to this fence post and assured us we were on top of the thing.
Unfortunately, in spite of searching at the base of the post, a nearby tree, rotting stump and discarded nappy we couldn’t find the cache.
After three hours of trudging along rough paths we were all just about ready to go home. Plus The Wife’s batteries were running low. (Long story)
So it was, with aching feet, legs, shoulders and bum! We made our way back to the car. Still, two out of three ain’t bad and it was our first time but there have been a few side effects.
Many of you might know I’m not the most svelte of gents and I’ve found I can barely walk today. My hip joints feel as it they need a good dose of WD-40 and my shoulders ache. How walking hurt one’s shoulders I can’t quite fathom but there we are.
Also DD got bitten by gnats in about seven different places and I ended up with a long scratch from a wayward Hawthorne.
All in all geocaching was a partial success and if we go again I think we’ll go somewhere a little more urban and paved.