Tuesday, 20 July 2010

A new hobby?

Well these are words I never thought I'd say but I'm becoming a bit of a geocaching nerd and absolutely loving it. Geocaching is a new concept to me - and I can understand why several of my work colleagues sniggered when I told them how I spent my Sunday walking around trying to find hidden treasures in hedgerows - but until you've tried it you just can't knock it.

For those of you unaware of the joys of Geocaching (http://www.geocaching.com/) this is an underground movement of people hiding caches in the countryside and the logging their GPS co-ordinates (for the technology minded I can recommend the iPhone App amazin!!) for others to search for.

Currently Mr P and myself have gone on 2 trips - our first haul was a find of 4 caches out of 5 not bad for our first trip. So buoyed with this success (and traumatised by the elusive ivy covered log we failed to locate) we went out foraging again this evening.

Now for those people who know me - it was raining! And I still went!! For those who don't know me - I don't do rain, it ruins hair, makes jeans wet and clingy and generally is not a look I try to sport.

However tonight the lure of finding treasure over rode the rain aversion and donning waterproof coat and sexy pink rainhat (yes rainhat - it is lush even if I do look from the back like a 90 year old granny) out we trotted. Now for the uninitiated when you spot people around where you are searching (known as muggles) the following feelings are common:

  • guilt
  • shame
  • collusion
  1. Guilt - do I look like a burglar/mugger? Unlikely in my pink rainhat but you never know!
  2. Shame - frankly digging around in hedgerow can make you look a tad nuts - a pooch would be a fab alibi however I am now allowed one by Mr P (- more to follow in subsequent posts on this!!)
  3. Collusion - the excitement of being a cache finder out on a mission is ace and thankfully overrides 1 & 2

I think the appeal for me is the treasure hunt element - the joy of solving a puzzle or finding something hidden by others is so exciting and all of this is FREE and involves exercise in the fresh air and showing off on the internet (you can log your finds on the geocaching website) I think it may become a regular thing.

Because normally if Mr P suggested that we go out walking for 2 hours in the rain on a school night I would assume he had gone slightly nuts and throw things at him. But with our new shared hobby this is an exciting plan that even a little torrential rain can't deter.

But these added health benefits frankly are an irrelevant but happy bonus. A normal walk while allowing the observation of views (and as I live on the Jurrasic coast I am most fortunate to be able to see some of the most amazing views in the UK) and exercise frankly can be a pointless affair where walking for the sake of walking occurs. The lure of the cache however means you walk faster and with purpose to hunt down your next find.

So where will you find us tomorrow evening? Most likely on our third hunting trip of the week wish us luck!

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