7 December 2014 (Sunday) - The Reindeer Farm

There are those that would not want to work on a Saturday night. I really don't mind; I don't have to do it *that* often, and having time off mid-week is not too bad at all. I did my bit at work last night, and whilst waiting for the relief shift to arrive there's no denying I quickly checked my emails in the hope of a notification that a new geocache had gone live on which I might chase the First to Find. As though getting one such on the way into work last night wasn't enough.
Instead I contented myself with doing a little maintenance (completely replacing) on one of my Canterbury-based cache hides. If anyone should see a bird box on the outskirts of Canterbury... look again.

As I drove home I listened to the church service on the radio. Today the service for the second Sunday in Advent was broadcast from St Joseph's church in Bradford. For all that I can hardly claim to be the world's most pious person I do like to listen to a"good" church service. There can be something spiritual and reassuring about it. Sometimes. But not today. Today's service was frankly rubbish. It featured Latin chants which were alternately howled and droned; with the occassional platitude thrown in for good measure. And bearing in mind how close we are to Christmas there wasn't a single Chrimbo carol.
I was disappointed.
And to add insult to injury the A28 was closed at Chilham which meant I had to take a rather circuitous detour to get home.

After a quick brekkie we gathered the first fruit of my loin and his entourage and we set off to the reindeer centre. It's nearly Christmas, and so the reindeer centre would be a fun place to visit.
In the three years since we first found the place it has risen in its popularity...

Our plan was to turn up , see Santa, see the animals, come home for a spot of lunch, and then (for me) go to bed before another night shift. It was a good plan, but like all plans bore little relation to what actually happened. We arrived shortly after 10am, and queued for forty five minutes just to get into the place. I was just a little shocked to find they'd put their prices up; we paid double what we'd paid last time. I thought fifty three quid for five of us was just the teensiest bit extortionate.
Bearing in mind that the queues were growing as we watched, we thought we'd best take Lacey to see Santa right away; we queued some more. We finally saw Santa after another hour's wait.

Then we went on to the petting zoo part of the place. They had some really good animals, reindeer, llamas, donkeys, goats, rabbits, ducks , pigs; all sorts of creatures. All tame and friendly, and all really good with children. Don't get me wrong; it was a really good outing. But it was *so* busy there. Previous trips there have been good fun. Today was hard work fighting our way round the swarms. By the time we were ready for lunch we all agreed we couldn't face more queues so we came home where Cheryl made some really good filled baguettes.
I finally got into bed about an hour and a half later than I would have liked, and slept like a log till six o'clock.

"er indoors TM" had made a rather good bit of scoff for tea, and then it was off to the night shift again. Just as I was about to set off I checked my emails. I had a message that one of my puzzle geocaches had gone missing. I say "gone missing"; actually the message was that someone couldn't find it. A subtle difference, and my heart sank when I checked the thing on my way to work and I found it was where it was supposed to be.
When I can't find a cache, I work on the principle of "I can't find it; so I'll try again another time". So often I get messages from people who cannot find caches I've hidden who take the line "I can't find it therefore it's not there" and these people take great offence when I check and tell them it was there all along. I've even been accused of lying and of putting out new caches (and faking loads of signatures in the wriiten logs before) by some of these people.
It came as something of a releif when having emailed the chap to say it *was* there he replied (in good humour) saying he'd try again.

And so to work. Another night shift.

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