Sunday, October 24, 2004

yet another cache

Nice Weekend

Had a wonderful weekend, the only issue being that it just was too short. I drove down to Durnham, NH with my friend M, so we could do some caches there. She managed to find us a way in that involved bushwhacking and boggy soil. It's amazing how things like that keep happening to us! The first cache was a pretty easy find, the second one was more challenging. Way more challenging.

At least this time, it wasn't challenging in a physical way, not too much bushwhacking, and only about 3.5 miles of hiking alltogether. And no darkness involved either. This time, the difficulty was in figuring out the cache coordinates.

It was a multi cache, with some challenging stages. Stage one was a film canister, hidden in the woods, which contained a formula to determine the coordinates for stage two. Do you know how hard it is to find a film canister in the middle of the woods? Actually, this first one wasn't too bad, so we expected that the other stages wouldn't be too hard either.

We found the first film canister, with the formula and hiked to the football field, where my friend's son played in the marching band during half time. Amazing how the timing worked out just right. She watched the band play, I worked on the math for the coordinates. It wasn't too hard, and I got the result that the cache was more than ten miles away. Hmmmm, that sounded kind of unlikely.

My friend came back and we compared results, found a few counting errors and calculated again. This time the cache was less than half a mile away, which sounded a lot more likely. We considered getting lunch, but the cache was calling to us, so we wanted to go caching first. Well, the only issue was that Sylvia had decided to show her disdain for our mathematical efforts by having a poopy diaper. So much for caching, we first needed to find a bath room to change her. I had a hard time not getting anything from the vending machines on the way there, but I was able to resist that temptation. It did tell me that I was getting hungry though. But who wants to eat if you can be out geocaching instead? ;-)

Into the woods, we went, and to the coordinates of the second stage. Another film canister. As I said before, do you know how hard it is to find a tiny film canister in the middle of the woods? Really hard. There were so many perfect hiding spots, but none of them had the canister. The GPS kept leading us to the wrong spots, the tree cover didn't help. We were all over the place, looking, and looking and looking. Searching, and searching, and searching. I started wondering about the calculations, did we do everything right? Was there something we were missing? Was the canister at a totally different spot because we messed up?

I was sure that our arithmetic had been faultless, but there was one variable that I started to wonder about. We wanted to search for a bit more and then go back to the first stage to double check that one variable. I started looking at places that were less likely, but could possibly have the canister. And suddenly, it jumped out at me. There it was!!! It had taken us quite a long time to locate though, so I was even more hungry by now.

But here we got the coordinates for the last stage of the hunt, the actual cache. How could we go eat when we were so close? We both decided that finding the cache was much more important, and I had some Luna bars with me anyway, so I just ate one of those, and we went to search for the last part. There was a certain lack of trails in that direction, so we had to bushwhack yet again. Not that there was much bush to whack through, those were pretty open woods, not much undergrowth.

Finally arrived at the cache site, we were sure this was going to be so much easier. We were looking for a rubbermaid container this time, as opposed to a film canister. That couldn't be hard, we would just walk right to it and then go have lunch (it was 4pm by then I think...)

The GPS kept leading us to different places, but none of them had the cache. It took us at least half an hour till I finally was hit by a particle of inspiration and looked in the right location. Clever hide, and it made us feel really good that we managed to do all those three stages.

By the time we were back at the car (yes, I had set a waypoint on it :-), it was 5pm and kind of late for lunch. My friend went off to meet with her son, I drove all the way back home, stopping once to nurse and change Sylvia.

Dh was not happy that I had been away for so long, Kate had been kind of challening, screaming and yelling, and fighting all day. I couldn't feel too sorry for him, I deal with her the six days a week that he works, so I felt entitled to a day off. It will make him appreciate the quietness at his office a lot more :-) That's where he spent the day today, he seemed really happy to escape this morning :-)

I was home just in time to clean my bath rooms for my friend Rachel coming over. We had a really nice night, talking a lot about all kinds of issues. Her kids and my kids play well together, now if only they would have gone to sleep at some point. I think it was after midnight before any one, apart from the two babies, was asleep. But they had a great time together :-)

Today, we first spent some more time with Rachel's family, and then went off to Jo-Ann's to get some fabric for a quilt for baby Angela. We want to make a quilt with our LLL group, and I still hadn't bought fabric. I took all the kids with me, so that made it a bit more challenging. In a moment of insanity, I told them that they all could get two fat quarters, and I would make a quilt for our family out of it. Not that I ever have made one. Or know how to make one. But that's not holding me back from trying anyway :-)

We got back to the car and some one came over to me, remarking 'Wow, I was looking at your family, how many kids do you have? I counted six.' I replied that she must have missed one, because I have seven. She told me 'You must have been really desperate for whatever you were getting there, to take them all with you!' LOL

Dropped off the squares, made a spectacle of ourselves at the grocery store, and finally were back home. Tara had planned chocolate fondue for dessert, so we spent some time preparing that. Erik decided that he didn't like chocolate anymore. How can any one not like chocolate???? Especially one of my kids?

One of my friends called to go out for a walk, I told her about the quilt and she lent me one of her quilt books after the walk. Now I just need to sit down and actually do it. I want to just make a very simple quilt, I cut all the fat quarters in four, so I have 48 squares now. Tim made a 6 x 8 pattern, which he thought would be perfect for the quilt. So I'll use his pattern for this quilt, I also want to incorporate Sylvia's old sling (which got destroyed at Oliver's cave). I think I will make it into four squares for the corners. Wish me luck! It is not going to be perfect, but at least I will finally make a quilt!

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