Blog Template Musings about Geocaching: 2006-07-02

Musings about Geocaching

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

I carried a copy of this poem in my wallet for years

Back in the '70's, this poem appeared in "The New Yorker" magazine. At least that is where I remember seeing it. I made a copy of it, reducing it on the Xerox machine at work, so I could carry the tiny words on a folded up piece of paper in my wallet. I carried that with me for many years.

I don't know where that worn paper disappeared to, but fortunately I copied the text to my computer about ten years ago. Someday I would like to commit it to memory.

Requiem for Sonora

a small child of a wind
stumbles toward me down the arroyo
lost and carrying no light
tearing its sleeves
on thorns of the palo verde
talking to itself
and to the dark shapes it touches
searching for what it has not lost
and will never find
and lonelier
than even I can imagine.

The moon sleeps
with her head on the buttocks of a young hill
and you lie before me
under moonlight as if under water
oh my desert
the coolness of your face

men are coming inland to you
soon they will make you the last resort
for tourists who have
nowhere else to go

what will become of the coyote with eyes of topaz
moving silently to his undoing
the ocotillo
flagellant of the wind
the deer climbing with dignity
further into the mountains
the huge and delicate saguaro
what will become of those who cannot learn
the terrible knowledge of cities

years ago I came to you as a stranger
and have never been worthy
to be called your lover or to speak you name
most silent sanctuary
more fragile than forests
more beautiful than water

I am older and uglier
and full of the knowledge
that I do not belong to beauty
and beauty does not belong to me
I have learned to accept
whatever men choose to give me
or whatever they choose to withhold
but oh my desert
yours is the only death I cannot bear.

Richard Shelton

The poem came to mind today as I was reading The Secret Life of Bees and finding other quotable statements like this one:

After you get stung, you can't get unstung no matter how much you whine about it.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

A hike to the top of Mt. Miguel -- 7.3 miles roundtrip

After sitting in my chair all week because of the unusually hot and humid weather, I wondered if I would be able to make the hike to the top of Mt. Miguel, an "event" planned for very early on July 4th. I decided to try it, so yesterday I loaded my GPSr with the caches on the mountain, including the ones that were Archived last year, and then went to bed very early so I could get up at 4:30 in the morning.

I met Jahoadi and fisnjack at her house, about .4 from where we were going to meet "lostguy" and Chuy!. I reset the trip odometer on my GPSr so I could see just how far we walked on this hike.

I enjoyed talking to my companions as we trudged up the steep trail. I haven't hiked with either Chuy! or "lostguy" before, although Chuy! is one of the first Geocachers I met more than an year ago.

The "marine layer" blanketed the entire valley and it was humid. As we hiked, we finally got above the clouds at about the same time they were beginning to burn off.

On a clear day, the views from some of the cache sites will be spectacular. Here is another view from high on the mountain

This is what our track looked like.

And this is the Profile of the mountain we climbed.

I might fill in more details later, right now I'm off to a Fourth of July bar-b-que at a friend's house.

Happy Fourth to Everyone!!!

Monday, July 03, 2006

A great Event organized by iTrax and FoxTail

After spending the entire week at home because of the oppressive heat and humidity, it was great to have an Event to attend Sunday night. Jahoadi and John let me carpool with them to the downtown San Diego location.

The Event had been organized by iTrax and FoxTail who are the orginators of a great, Geocaching-related, weekly PodCast.

One of the first things I got to do at the Event, after getting my name tag, was "Discover" a new Moun10Bike coin that is going to be given away at another Event being held this week.

Although I took my camera with me, I never got it out to take any pictures at the well-attended Event. I was having too much fun talking to new people (like Cookie and Bruiser and The Polar Bears), greeting others like Nick of GRNZOOM who recently had heart surgery, and visiting with my hiking and caching partners, to think about taking pictures.

It was great to see Let's Look Over Thayer again and he shared his complete set of Puzzle Coins with the group.


During the raffle, my number wasn't picked, but other than that, the Event was wonderful.

After everyone else left, several of us sat at one table and exchanged stories. Pacholik, who caches in a different area most of the time, had some very interesting tales to tell. He is a "Puzzle Cacher." I sure wish there was a way to get my brain rewired so I could also enjoy trying to figure out the Puzzle caches.

We finally left the restaurant and made the several-block walk to the car. We were parked on the "G for Go Home" street that conveniently turns in to Highway 94. On the way home, we stopped to find a cache in an area that, during the day, would have been very muggle-full.

We were having trouble finding it with only the narrow beams of our flashlights to illuminate the bush, so I read the hint in my Palm, first getting the wording a bit mixed up while trying to read the words in the dim light there in the parking lot. The cache turned out to be 3' up in the white fly-infested bush, instead of only 12" as the hint stated. John was the persistent one, nearly disappearing inside the bush to search more thoroughly.

I had a great time. When I woke up this morning, last night's experience seemed almost like a dream. It was over too quickly, and for me, these Events don't happen nearly often enough. The last one I attended was shortly after returning from my road trip. Back then, it was just the "medicine" I needed to get me back in the game.

I wonder who will schedule the next one . . . and when?


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