22 February 2013 (Friday) - Hawkhurst, Pluto...
I woke this morning with quite a lot of pain from my back. It's been playing up for over a week now. It should stop hurting soon, shouldn't it? Over a spot of brekkie I checked my emails and caught up with the world.
Something on Facebook made me smile. A distant family relative is standing for political office in Hastings, claiming to be "already working hard for his home patch". Other family members assure me that he considers his "home patch" not to be where he lives, but to be where he seeks said political office. His aunt has publicly described him as "a little shit". I did snigger.
Lisa and Earle called round. The Lisa-mobile was due a service near Hawkhurst this morning, and whilst the car was having things done Lisa was planning to pick up some caches in the area. Did I fancy going along? I did.
Leaving Furry Face at home (for a change) we made our way to the garage where we left the car (and Earle) and set off into the wild blue yonder. Hawkhurst is somewhere I’ve driven through many times, but rarely (if ever) stopped off and had a nosey round. Parts of the area are quite scenic. We found some rather nice back alleys, one of which featured a geocache several yards from where I thought the designated coordinates should have been. We found the end point of a multi-cache just as the snow started falling.
We found ourselves following a clearly marked footpath into private land, and then after a scramble we made our way onto a disused train track. The rails had long since gone, but the old train route was clearly visible. A little way along this route was an old train tunnel. There was a geocache hidden in this tunnel. In the dark, in mud that was knee deep in places.
Having found that cache and eventually having got back onto recognised rights of way (as opposed to random woodland) we used the ordnance survey function of my phone (woo!) to get to Bedgebury. We’d been there a few weeks ago and hadn’t done half of the geocaches in those woods. We’d spotted an obvious loop of ten caches that we thought we could do in an hour. And we did. It was at his point that I found my 1200th cache. 1200 in just over six months is rather good going.
By now it was mid-day and we made our way back to collect the car. There was a minor hiccup. The car was in bits and needed a vital component; one that none of the local auto-suppliers had. So with the promise of one being available on Monday we left the fragments of the Lisa-mobile in the garage and scrounged a lift to Staplehurst where we took the train back to civilisation. Apart from leaving cashpoint cards on the train the journey home was relatively uneventful. Once home I fussed the dogs (Sidney was in residence) and watched an episode of Babylon 5 over a boneless Banquet from the KFC. I felt I deserved a treat.
Being the last Friday of the month I set off to astro club. There was quite a bit of talk of space rock thingies. I rather suspect that the masses have forgotten the origin of the term "space rock thingies". I just might need to post "patent pending" on the Facebook page,
The main talk of the evening was on Pluto. I learned quite a bit. Obviously a lot of time was spent on Pluto's recent demotion and it's having lost it's "planet" status. On reflection I can't help but feel the whole "planet"/"dwarf planet" argument is daft. It's not at all about science; it's about definitions.
It don't matter how you dress it up, Pluto is a planet. Always was, always will be...