Sunday, 29 November 2009

It's been a while …


Blimey, didn't realise how long it's been since I wrote anything on the blog. It's been a bit busy!

Most interesting thing that's happened that's caching related, is my first event as host. I held a Flash Mob in Colchester, outside the castle gates. Seems to have been a success … 70 mad geocachers turned up on a decidedly unpleasant night, weather-wise! My camera decided it was going to pack up about an hour before the event, so we were reduced to using Mrs G's little digital. The result wasn't brilliant, but at least you can see that a few people turned up.

We followed this up with an event at a local pub, which the reviewers saw fit not to publish. Still can't see the harm in having a follow-up event. Apparently it was too close in time and distance to the FlashMob, which is, of course, exactly the point! Nevermind, we still had a good time at the pub, and helennbrian set a couple of micros to make up for the disappointment of not getting the pub event published.

Other than that, I've walked 16 miles around the Mega 2 series with andy_uk63 and kevanjue, which was a really good day out and made all the more special by the meal we had at the Star Inn in Bentworth. A really wonderful pub; the beer's very well kept and the food is fantastic. Throughly recommended.

I've also had a wander around the new PUBS series by Grimmer Scotting. This is a really good walk. Sadly, I didn't get the chance to investigate any of the pubs on what turned out to be a ten and a half mile walk, because I was driving, but the walk is really nice and the caches interesting and varied.

Looking forward to the first Essex Meet Event in January. It's been a long time coming, and helennbrian have leapt in and started the ball rolling. Should be a really good night.

Friday, 14 August 2009

Les Paul

Really sorry to hear about the passing of Les Paul. He was an amazing man and an inspiration to many, many guitarists the world over.

Rest in Peace.

Monday, 10 August 2009

Mega!

Spent the weekend in Weston-super-Mare doing a spot of caching and visiting the 2nd UK Mega Event.

Was great to catch up with my old mate Satellite Kid and meet some other camping/caching nutters. Spent the Saturday evening sitting around a blazing(!) fire on one of the campsites in the illustrious company of House of Boo, Birdman of Lisketraz, Bambography, Satellite Kid, flying420uk and lots of others. Brilliant night.

I've been to a few events, but I've never camped at one. I do believe that I shall be doing a bit more of this when I can! Had a great laugh … pity the beer was crap! (not yours Jon, that was lovely!) The campsite shop was a trifle lacking in the alcoholic beverage department.

The weather was just about as perfect as it could be and I went of with S.kid to do a couple of caches early on before going to the camping event at 4pm. Met up with the Cartooners en-route and teamed up with them for a while.

Then we sat on the beach for a few hours, drinking beer, watching kites and generally having a laugh. Then off we went (when it started getting a bit chilly) to sit around the fire.

Got a few silly pics that I'll post as soon as I get 'em off the camera … you'll love the cache queue!

The next day, I got up ridiculously early, packed up the tent, and trundled off to W-s-M to bag my first Wherigo cache before the start of the main event. Wandering around Weston on a Sunday morning collecting clues proved to be just what I needed to blow off the previous nights cobwebs. That completed, it was off to the Mega.

Well organised event, with a few stalls and talks going on. Nice to see so many cachers all in one place. Nipped out with Satellite Kid and flying420uk to bag a few cachers locally before going back for the opening ceremony at 1pm(!).

This cache hunt was a real experience … basically, all we had to do was spot the crowd! God only knows what the locals thought was going on … the only thing that was possibly more unusual than twenty people standing around a rock signing small bits of paper, was the presence of the Sealed Knot who were there for a re-enactment.

All good fun, though, and there really is a cracking bus shelter to look at … there's a cache there, but it has to be the most over-the-top bus shelter ever.

All-in-all, a really enjoyable day.

Oh, and I said I'd say something disparaging about a certain person, but I really can't think of anything. So Pete, if you're reading this, you're perfect … honest!

On the other hand …

Lakes

In between the torrential downpours, I managed to fit in a few caches in and around the Lake District while we were there a couple of weeks ago. I must say, there are some excellent caches up here, including some real crackers by the Smileys.
I managed not to get scratched to bits like I normally do, which is always nice, and we managed to have a pleasant, if very damp, holiday.

One bonus was a coffee shop in Keswick which I walked the mile or so down to nearly every morning. It had free wireless internet, so I sat there in the mornings, before the rest of the family was up, with a hug cup of coffee logging the previous day's caches on my pda and reading the paper. Very civilised!

Didn't get to do as much walking as I would have liked, because of the weather, but I managed to get along a disused railway line, just outside Keswick. This had one or two caches dotted along it, but it was a really enjoyable walk, with several bridges over the river that provided some gorgeous views.

My favourite cache of the week was one I didn't find! I climbed up a hill with the eldest gt junior to find a really spectacular view of the surrounding Lakes. The bracken was obviously enjoying it up there, as it was thick and everywhere. We think we knew where the cache was, but, because of the undergrowth, the spot looked like a sheer drop. Probably wasn't, but I wasn't going to risk it! Really hope to get back to this one, as the place is a delight. GC1BPQT, Elterwater View, if you're ever up that way; I'd recommended it!

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Chiltern Hundred

Finished at last! Splendid day out with kevanjue and andy_uk63. They had 40-odd to do and I had 13, so we did two or three together but went our separate ways for the rest. I knew my 13 would be a bit tough, as they were spread out around the whole series, but I didn't realise that it'd take me quite as long as it did! Finding places to park was a bit of a nightmare, but I managed to get the required number in the end. In fact, it took me so long, Kev and Andy finished before me, and they had to do two-thirds more than me!

Wonderful, varied series, I'd thoroughly recommend it to anyone!

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Earthcaches and Church Micros

I love 'em!

Saturday, 4 July 2009

Return

GC.com is back online. It's not displaying pics or advertising properly, but everything seems to be intact and working after more than 30 hours down. They've done an amazing job over there!

Recovery

It's just been twittered that the datacentre, and therefore GC.com, is on the road to recovery. No estimation on how long it's going to be before things are back to normal yet, but, fingers crossed, it won't be too long.

Machines

The machines have power! Jeremy et al are working on getting the sites online now … fingers crossed!

Power 2

Building lights are coming back on and the air-con is working. I reckon, reading between the lines, that it's going to be sometime before it's up-and-running again. Already been down for more than 24 hours! :(

AC 2

Aircon off again :(

AC

The aircon seems to be working, so they may get the servers back online soonish …

Power!

It seems that the generators at the data centre are being turned on!

OK?

Sounds like the problem is soley with the generators … servers are fine. That being the case, I would imagine that data loss would be minimal.

Fisher Plaza

Still waiting for the geocaching servers to come back online. Jeremy Irish is on the scene and is keeping us up-to-date with regular tweets from the site. I must admit, his tone doesn't seem too concerned, so hopefully that means that there'll not be any data-loss. Lots of very hard work going on to restore service soon.

GC.com down

It seems a fire at a Seattle data centre has taken out geocaching.com as well as some other important (possibly even more important!) websites. There seems to have been some serious water damage, but no-one has been reported as injured, thankfully. I'm following various twitterings and trying to keep up-to-date with developments, so I'll post more information as soon as I hear it.

Saturday, 27 June 2009

punk

Thought I'd punk up the blog page so it's in keeping with my new punked-up calling cards!

Sunday, 29 March 2009

Grail Quest: Siege Perilous


Part one of Grail Quest has just been published. This has been in the pipeline for some time now and will, hopefully, be followed by several more, becoming a mega series that gets harder and harder to finish! You can find it by searching for GC1FGWQ. Have fun!

Saturday, 7 February 2009

ICON!


Just noticed that the Camulodunum geocoin has received its icon on gc.com!

Apparently, due to a mix up at the mint, an extra quantity of coins were produced that took the total up to the required 250.

To say I was pleased would be an extreme understatement!

Monday, 26 January 2009

400!


Finally reached my 400th cache a week ago! A splendid cache near Framlingham Castle called "L.M.B.B" Box (GC1GJ2D). I found this after the very agreeable Suffolk Stroll series and made a perfect end to a great day's caching. Recommended!

Never give up on a TB!

I posted this a few days ago on the East Anglian Cachers Forum, but I think it wouldn't hurt to repeat it …

My first ever TB, The Claudius Bug, went missing in the US in June. It was placed in a cache in NY state and disappeared. It turned out that the owner of the cache had picked it up to protect it from a TB thief. So, after a few weeks thinking it was lost, it turns up in another cache, and then … nothing. I posted a note on the cache page, asking the next cacher to find it to have a look to see if my TB was still there. The response was negative. Definitely not there. I was on the verge of marking it as missing when, just yesterday, almost seven months after its last log, it turns up in the bottom of a back pack! The guy who picked it up had completely forgotten about it and has just found it and has now moved it on … and I'm very grateful.

So, if any of you have ever had a TB go missing … never give up! It may yet turn up!

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Hadleigh Geobache


Well, it's been an age since I last blogged, but I'm back!

Did another big lump of the Chiltern Hundred series a couple of weeks back, and I'm now on 69. One more visit should see me get to the 100 and then I'll be able to grab the bonus!

It looks like my geocoin may yet get it's icon. Another 105 coins have been minted which should mean that the elusive icon will be possible.

There's lots going on geocaching-wise in the Essex Country Parks … watch this space!

But by far the highlight of the last month has been the Hadleigh Country Park Geobache! What a fantastic day out. Brilliantly organised, some stunning caches, old and new, and great company. I spent the day with kevanjue and andy_uk63 and we managed 17 caches in the park and another on the way home (via the pub for a nice meal). The weather was perfect, and great day was had by all. I even picked up my bright shiny new East Anglia Cachers geocoins. It doesn't get much better than this!