17 November 2014 (Monday) - Bit Dull Really...

The night before last I didn’t use my CPAP machine; I did last night, and the difference in the quality of sleep was amazing. For all that I don’t like being plumbed in at night, I think I shall continue with it. Sleeping right through until an alarm goes off is truly amazing.

I got up, had brekkie and saw a new geocache had gone live near Pluckley. It had been active for over an hour; had I been going to work today I would have chased the First to Find. Instead I took  “Furry Face TM round the park for a walk. We went a little further than we have recently; he ran quite a lot of the way, trying to fight with buses, taxis and motorbikes as we went. As we walked I did a little “whistle practice”; I blow the whistle, pup comes running to me and gets a treat. The idea is that he associates the whistle with a treat, and so it’s a way of getting hold of him when I need to (as opposed to when I *want* to). We’ve not done this for a while, and to my amazement it worked well; he remembered how to do it.

Once home he devoured his brekkie (he gets that after the walks so that the whistle will work), and I did a few geo-puzzles. There is a series of puzzles in Sussex that I’ve been meaning to try to solve for ages. I made a start on that series today. Supposedly designed for children; I found then rather hard. There is one word-search that has me foxed, and another puzzle in which you have to match caterpillars to butterflies. I haven’t a clue on that one.
I sent “Furry Face TM into the garden and I had a little sax practice; it’s amazing how quickly you get out of the hang of playing the thing.

The morning soon passed, and over a sandwich I watched a film. “The Sin Eater” was actually a good film. I watched it all the way through without turning off; just lately I’ve switched off half way through a lot of films. The film was actually based on a real superstition. I learned something today.

I checked the Internet – that geocache in Pluckley was still unfound. So I drove out to find it. Funnily enough I drove out at about the same time as another cacher did; unfortunately for me she only lived a couple of minutes down the road from the cache; she got there first, did the happy dance and was away before I arrived.
As I drove I came past one of my own caches. A car was parked there; I got out and said hello to the people who were caching. I was instantly recognised (for some reason I usually am!) and it turned out that this cache was probably missing. Several of that series seem to have gone walkabout. As many of them are custom-made caches I shall walk out over the next week or so, retrieve the caches that are left and archive the series. They are all puzzle caches and no one likes puzzles. I also have a multi-series nearby that no one has been near for months. That can go as well.

I came home and had a mini-sax practice. I managed about ten seconds before my dog started singing along. I wish he wouldn’t. He got sent outside for ten minutes whilst I tootled.
And then I did a little geo-research. When I go out caching I use my phone because I can do everything immediately on the phone through the internet connection. For no reason that I can see pretty much everyone else uses a hand-held GPS unit that you have to pre-program at home before you go out, and then bring home and plug into your home PC and use more software (that costs) before you can actually do any secret geo-rituals. Those who use GPS units are continually finding caches they’ve done and not logged, or are hundreds of caches behind with their secret geo-ritualling, and spend an age fiddling about doing stuff that the phone does automatically.
I *really* can’t see why everyone wants to use a hand-held GPS unit; I’ve been asking for two years and only ever been told that “I don’t understand”. Well, I don’t understand. Why are these things so popular? Why won’t anyone tell me? There clearly must be some advantage that I’m missing. The *only* advantage of a GPS unit that I can see is that they are waterproof. On Saturday my phone leaked a little. A month or so ago it leaked a lot. I was seriously considering getting a hand-held unit purely because they would be waterproof. But anything other than a wi-fi capable unit would be a seriously backward step. I was considering spending nearly five hundred quid on something I really don’t want when I realised I could get a waterproof cover for my phone for a fiver. Or I could steal the one that  ‘er indoors TM  isn’t using.
I shall try that cover the next time it rains and see how I get on…

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