Sunday, September 21, 2008

A geocaching milestone

Hello and I want to place some really evil and clever hides. There's a masterful hider here we are going to visit next month to learn some cammo tricks, and there's a trailhead micro we've tried to spot three or four times already and we just can't see it. So this day's hunt was all about micros. We found a whole pile of them and learned about some new containers and placements. We have a big tackle box full of fun swag and, even though we were going for micros today, we filled our packs up with trade goodies. Mine was completely empty and that just doesn't feel right, so I crammed in as much as I could. It was as full as it could be and it turned out to be very naughty swag.

Neither of us are morning people, so we only catch a couple before we are ready for lunch. We hunted for one in a huge empty parking lot, empty except for a cop sitting in his car smack in the middle of the lot. We print out the hides we are looking for, and I had it in hand while Hello worked the GPS, so we were prepared to explain ourselves. Despite lurking in and out of the bushes (and getting poked in the eye) he paid us no mind and Hello found it as I rubbed at my eyeball. I forgot my sunglasses and haven't found the safety glasses I want for my pack yet. It was a funny hide, under a cammo'ed container and set in a rat trap! We went for another and didn't look long before I had to pee. So I went to use the bathroom and Hello found the cache. Oh good, says I upon returning, where is it? She made me look for it. Mean thing. So I found it for myself and we chatted with a cute little black squirrel and then we went to find one placed in memory of a fellow who passed away this year. I read the hide description as Hello drove, and we park and (of course) hunt in entirely the wrong area. A young family walks by. "Mommy, what are they doing in the bushes?" asks the little girl. "Looking for their ball", answers mom without missing a beat. I bet that little one asks LOTS of questions. We got covered in ants and spent several minutes ewwwwwing and brushing them off each other. Hello tried to get a butterfly to sit on her finger, but they all had attitudes and wouldn't cooperate. There were about a hundred of them, and one fully grown muggle hopping up and down like a kangaroo. What the hell? Dork. We eventually find the cache. Rest in peace, Fred. Then we head off for lunch. We have japanese food and lavendar tea, use the tree filled bathroom and off we go again.

We found many clever hides, new styles, and as we hunt I am thinking up evil hides with my newfound knowledge. I haven't come up with anything really horrible yet, but I will. MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Hello has two evil ideas already, but it's a secret. MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! We want to stump one of our longtime local cachers, who hasn't been impressed at all with the few hides we've placed and leaves us teasing logs. In fact, we were going for our 100th find today and we wanted to make it one of his so we could tell him how boring it is in the log to commemorate it. We're a bit snarky. LOL.

A cute green snail was sitting on a cloaked cache stuffed into the bark of a redwood tree. There were many cute snails in there, so I carefully removed and replaced the tiny cache. We also visited another local cacher's house. We're not crazy about residential hides. Whispering, quiet voices, eyes darting around, peering into the yard of the wrong house, quick grab and replace and then getting the hell out of there. I act and feel like a creep. I can see why the burly men who cache alone make some folks nervous. We're not even a little bit scary looking, crazy maybe with leaves and twigs in our hair, but we laughed about what the neighbors must be thinking. Peeking through their curtains, dialing 9 1 and waiting for us to do something before pressing 1 again. We finally find the clever hide, admire a yard full of birdhouses, and get the hell out of there. As we're driving along to the next, I pull my cell phone out. Mostly to make sure I still have it. I forgot to move it out of the meshy front pocket to an inside zipper pocket and as I have it in hand to move it, I realize it's making a call. In fact, it's calling Hello!

"I'm calling you."

"You are?" She pulls out her phone. Ring ring. "You are! Hello?", she answers. Ha ha.

I hang up the phone and it immediately calls her again. Ring ring. I hang it up and it calls her again. Ring ring. WTF? My phone is haunted. Then I realize what's happening. My ear piece is somewhere in the swag stuffed pack, and something has pressed the on button long enough to connect it, and now it is repeatedly dialing the last number I called with it. Ring ring. I hang it up. Ring ring. We're cracking up as we make our way to the next hide. Ring ring. I'm poking at my pack to try and move the naughty bit of swag that's pressing on the autodial button. Ring ring. Holding the phone so I can hang it up. Ring ring. Ring ring. Ring ring. We get to the next spot and I dump out my pack, find and disconnect the ear piece and place it in it's own little pocket, and off we march to catch our next find. Woo hoo! A creek trail. Do you know you just called me twelve times? Ha! Oh shit, it's directly on the other side of the creek. Wait. We've been over there. We climbed on that brown grate thing, didn't we? We already got that one! Crap. How did that happen? Oh well. The next cache we try is near the same creek, and Hello is triumphantly waving it over her head almost before I've unassed the car. I did the same thing at a large parking lot for commuters. I grabbed something funny and there it was and got a look as I held it up for her to see. Of course a bus came in right then and 40 people got off. Another sent us to "where the old people live". I thought the "old" was a trifle unnecessary....until we got there. Now we think it should be changed to "where the grumpy old people live". I don't think we've ever been scowled at so much.

It's getting late in the day and some clouds have moved in to filter out much of our sunlight, so it's time to get that 100th and we're composing the teasing log we are going to post and giggling on the way there. As soon as we reach the trail entrance, we suspect that we've found this one already, too. Hoping it's only familiar as part of a series in this large hilly park, we head in, but nope. We hunt it down and we did already find it. Crap. Well, we saw two black tail deer and got a mini hike and we've got just enough light to hunt the nearby trailhead micro we've had trouble with. It's rated a four difficulty, so not finding it doesn't make me feel stupid, but I sure would like to get it. All we learned this day about micros did not help, so we gave it up and debated whether to ask for a hint, or try again when we've got more experience. I vote for a hint. Damn thing. I wonder what it is?


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