Thursday, March 22, 2007

Self Improvement

I started two new hobbies today. Hobby #1: I received my Garmin eTrex GPS. I took a few moments to familiar myself with it, loaded Eryn into her wagon, and took off looking for a geocache. Not familiar with it? It's where you get a set of coordinates off a community web site (or, theoretically, out of a box you find) and use your GPS to find those coordinates, and whatever is hidden there. Usually there's a container and it's slightly hidden, so sometimes there are clues. When you find it, you sign the notepad in the box, or trade something of yours for the thing that is in the box. Not so difficult. However, I had to leave Eryn with Pooteewheet as the site in question was deep in the woods. And up a muddy hill.

Going up was no problem. Going down. That hurt a lot. My leg still aches where I flipped up in the air and landed on my back. I'll post a picture of my muddy back and butt for everyone later. It would have been one thing if I had found the box, but even that was a failure. I only had a limited time to look, and I hadn't quite figured out all the bells and whistles on the GPS, so instead of looking for the box with a scale of 50 feet or so, I was looking on a scale of 800 feet. You can be only a little ways off, and still be like 100 feet off at that resolution. I figured that part out as I was walking out of the woods. So I'll try again tomorrow or this weekend and succeed. And my neighbor Steve wants to join in the fun, so it'll be a group outing.

An amusing aside...these are my stats from walking:
1.78 miles
2.6 avg moving speed
7.6 mph max speed
41:20 min. moving
9:30 min stop

See the weird stat? That 7.6 mph moving speed. I wasn't running. That's the speed Scooter travels when he's flying through the air down the hill to land on his back. Doh.

I also had my first guitar lesson tonight. I've been meaning to take lessons for a long time and finally got my act together. Erik had been nice enough to give me an old guitar, but he was a bit worried one of the posts was wobbly. Seems to be the smallest one as the string won't ever quite get in tune and after you worry it enough, it snaps. What's worse is when you try to rethread it during a lesson and get the sharp end in your thumb, and then it almost comes out the other side of your thumb, and then you realize it's bent on one end because you did that when you were threading it, and now it's in there like a fishhook, and what are you going to do if it doesn't come out, because you certainly don't have a wire snip right there in your pocket because you're not one of those guys who carries around a leatherman whereever you go. But I got it backed out and the lesson could continue without me trying to drive home literally attached ot my guitar. Small hole. Bit of bleeding. Not so bad.

Otherwise, the lesson was great and I've already learned a few basics and at least one thing I didn't know before about finger positioning. I am poised to begin my quest to travel from cache to cache playing guitar in spots where no one can hear me. I imagine that's for the best.

And my rechargable batteries showed up for my wireless headphones! I can bike on my trainer once again without feeling bored out of my mind, if my leg, back, and finger allow it.


Reinier said...

Hi scooter,

I have read on your website you are using a Garmin GPS-device.

That's nice. We have developped a new webapplication ( which allows you to upload your GPS-data and share this with others.

Please have a look and let me know your reaction:



Anonymous said...

Geocaching looks FUN! Guitar playing does not.

I hope you continue to blog about your caching--Almost makes buying a gps reasonable.

boringsahm said...

Wow, I love the idea of this "Garmin eTrex GPS" device, doubt it will be here anytime soon though, so I'll just have to listen to all your adventures!