Friday, March 24, 2006

Misadventures in Geocaching

Have you ever had one of those days where everything that could go wrong, does - almost as if your every action were scripted by some satirical deviant who planned the whole thing just for his own amusement? Earlier this week, I had one of those days. These are my adventures misadventures in geocaching from that day.

For the past several weeks, my geocaching activities have been suspended due to the birth of my second daughter. After almost a month-long absence from geocaching, I finally decided to head out and grab two brand new caches that were just hidden in our area on my way to work.

Early Tuesday morning, two new caches popped up on my screen and both were less than 10 miles from my home. Even better, they were mostly on the way to my office with only a slight detour through the town of Hewitt. I rushed to get ready in the morning, rushed out the door, and drove to the first cache site, Chapel's End, as quickly as I could while still obeying the speed limits! I pulled up to the stop, got out of my car, and practically ran over to the URP listed in the cache hint!! I opened up the bison tube, extracted the tiny logbook, got ready to sign my giant *FTF* above my name, and then I saw it - "Giggledodge 3/21/06 FTF." ARGH!!!

That was how it all began. With this first failed FTF attempt, I knew right then and there what sort of day I was going to have. Reluctantly, I decided to go ahead and go find the second new cache just over a mile away, Twenty-Seven Feet. Wearing my dress shoes, khaki pants, and a nice dress shirt, I arrived at the second location to find the cache container near a roadside water tank in a small tree. Unfortunately, the tree was surrounded by thorny briars and I got several big red scrapes all up and down my hands and arm why retrieving and replacing this cache. If that weren't bad enough already, I open the log and read "Giggledodge 3/21/06 FTF." ARGH, ARGH!!!!!!

But as you can probably guess from the image, the misadventures don't stop there. Hewitt is one of those little Texas towns that has a reputation for being a speed trap and has an overabundance of police officers with nothing else to do, and I am unfortunately one of those people who will sometimes forget to do certain yearly activities whenever my life gets a little hectic. This time, while preparing for the birth of my daughter, I apparently forgot three very important tasks:
  1. Mount my newest vehicle registration sticker,
  2. Get my vehicle's inspection sticker renewed, and
  3. Put a copy of my vehicle's most recent proof of insurance in my glove box.
Normally, in most cities and highways across Texas, all three of these are things that police officers usually check if and only if you get pulled over for something else like speeding - NOT IN HEWITT! One of Hewitt's local police officers happened to drive by in the opposite direction as I was just about to cross out of their city limits, when all of the sudden I saw him turn around in the middle of the road and begin to follow me.

I immediately ran through a mental checklist of all the things I could have been doing wrong:  Was I speeding? No. Did I run a stop sign? No. Was I following too close to another car? No. Was I swerving or driving erratically? No, none of the above. The officer just happened to notice as we passed that I still had the "5" vehicle inspection sticker instead of the "6" sticker and he didn't have anything else more important to do. Lucky me, I had actually paid for my 2006 vehicle registration; I just hadn't put the sticker on yet. For this, I just got a warning, but I wasn't so lucky for the other two issues. ARGH, ARGH, ARGH!!!!!!!!!

In summary, on my first morning out caching since the birth of my child, I missed two FTFs, got an armful of bloody scrapes, two citations, a written warning, and ended up being late to work by the time it was all said and done. It was... in every possible way... a really bad day!


Anonymous said...

WOW!!! Sounds like that was one of those days when you should have turned the alarm clock off and stayed in bed.

Next time have just one more cup of good luck juice(coffee) before leaving the house :-)

I hope your next outing is much better.


Unknown said...

Yikes...that is a bad day caching! I've yet to log my first FTF, but hope to do so in the near future. Here in TAG country, we have a lot of active cachers, as well, making those FTFs hard to get. I seem to get beat every time :)

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