6 April 2014 (Sunday) - Parish Peregrination
Yet another restless night. I'm getting so fed up with this. Especially at the weekends when I find myself sitting watching rubbish on the telly just to waste the time until "er indoors TM" gets up. The trouble is that by the time she gets up (at a sensible sort of time) I am bored senseless and itching to go do something.
This morning I had been intending to kill time by starting watching "Game of Thrones". On my newly-upgraded SkyPlus box I saw I could download the first three seasons. Or so I thought. When I tried to do so it told me to upgrade my subscription. I'm not doing that; I pay quite enough already So I downloaded and watched "Extras" instead. Starring Ricky Gervais it's quite entertaining. I'll have to see if I can borrow "Game of Thrones" on DVD.
Also whilst killing time I had a look-see at my tent poles. Having had one break at last August's camp I have had them in my living room as a reminder to get them fixed. Sweatman's mowers let me down yesterday. I wondered if there was somewhere on my way to work where I might get a replacement pole. But having had a look-see I can't help but think that a good dose of duct tape will put it all to rights.
And so off to Singleton to collect Suzy and Gordon Tracy for our peregrination. From wictionary, a peregrination is a journey from place to place. Usually on foot. Parish Peregrination is billed as a series of (about) thirty geocaches involving a walk of about fifteen miles through six kentish parishes.There are some who might say that the distance was somewhat excessive for one day, but we thought we'd give it a go.
We nearly fell at the first hurdle; on approaching the designated parking spot (where formal permission to park has been given to all geocachers) we found a locked gate. Woops. A two mile detour brought us to the other side of that gate; and we were off peregrinating.
It was a good walk; only one stile on the entire route, and very clearly marked footpaths for all of the way (except in only one spot). We had a "hit list" of twenty-nine geocaches; we found twenty-eight. We didn't try for the twenty-ninth. the descripttion said that the church in which it was based closed at 5pm, and at 5.05pm we were still several hundred yards up the road from it.
We were walking for nine hours today, and at the end we had covered just under seventeen miles. I feel I must mention the religious nuts we met along the way. In the middle of nowhere a chap with a pronounced American accent appeared from nowhere and led us back to the footpath from which we had strayed. As we walked along this path we were harried and harrassed by several people who I could only describe as looking like extras from the fiilm "Deliverance". One of the more loquatious of these people, a rather scary freak wielding a large axe, told us that they were a self-sufficient community of seventy families totalling nearly three hundred people, bound together by their faith in their God.
I'm sure these deightful people (!) were harmless, but I certainly felt rather apprehensive around them, and was certainly glad when we got away from their lands. Mind you it did very little for my state of mind to find we'd gone from religious-nut-central to Chillenden; scene of one of the most horrific murders in living memory.
I took fifty photos whilst we were out. I do that a lot.
As a geocache series how could I describe it? It is unlike any cache walks I've done before. I first heard of this series at a cachers meet about a year ago when I heard it described as "old-school". I think that's a fair description. The caches are spaced out far more so than on many other geo-walks; an average distance of half a mile between caches. The only two other walks I've done of comprable distance (Gypsum Gyratory and CBN series) have a hundred (or more) caches and are numbered 1, 2, 3... This walk isn't like that. Each cache has it's own name and a little local history, and needs a little thought with the map to work out which cache is next and where the route goes. Which is a good thing. Some walks are all about numbers of caches. This one isn't. It's about a really good walk.
It's a shame more people haven't done this walk. The individual caches get found, but from what I could see I don't think anyone has done it in its entirety for eight months.
Once home "Furry Face TM" curled up in has basket and snored. The poor little dog was worn out. My face was glowing; for all that the day was rather overcast I caught the sun today. And my back really hurts too. I can understand my legs aching, but why should my back ache?
I can't be ill tomorrow. I've finally got an appointment with the experts who are going to sort out my insomnia. I hope...