4 August 2019 (Sunday) - Loose

Despite having had a serious tidy-up last night, I got up this morning and still found load of carnage from yesterday. I spent a little while tidying, then had a look at the Internet as I scoffed my toast.
I follow a Facebook page about the hotel in Turkey where we stayed earlier in the year. Apparently a child has fallen over by one of the pools, and has needed to have stitches. There was quite a discussion (rant) about the matter. There was a *lot* of talk about how difficult it is to claim compensation in Turkey, and a *lot* of resentment to the suggestion that parents should insist that children *don’t* sprint like things possessed over wet and slippery floors. Especially when there are signs everywhere saying how dangerous slippery floors can be.

I tried to encourage Fudge to eat his brekkie; he wasn’t keen. Yesterday I’d mentioned to my brother that barbecues have two settings; “burnt” and “diarrhea”. Unfortunately my dog seemed to have gone for the second setting.
"er indoors TM" then pointed out that a new geocache had gone live in Biddenden, and bearing in mind the traffic chaos planned for the motorway for today, this new cache was actually on our way to today’s walk. We got ready as quickly as we could, and got to the new cache at just the same time as the resident local FTF fiend got there. But a joint FTF is always good, and it was good to catch up and chat for a few minutes.
We were only ten minutes late getting to Loose.

Bearing in mind that half of our number probably were a tad under the weather today, the plan for today was to take it easy. We started off with a short(ish) stroll through the Loose Valley…
Oh dear.
As always our route was laid out for us by a series of geocaches, and today was definitely a walk of two halves. The first half was best described as “frustrating”. It was only when we got home that I realized that the chap who had hidden these caches had never actually walked a series of geocaches himself. He’d done odd caches of series, but not a complete series. And (unfortunately) it showed.
Things started badly when we read that our first target geocache was labelled as “dogs allowed”, only to find it was in a field with signs saying “no dogs”. The given co-ordinates for our second target were about twenty yards out; in fact the given co-ordinates of most of the caches in this series were seriously awry (We only found them from seeing what friends had said about their experiences there). There was a section of the walk along a busy road which might have been bypassed by use of footpaths. Footpaths weren’t clearly marked. And the route involved quite a bit of back-tracking. (The idea is that you walk a route along which geocaches have been placed. You don’t walk back and forth from one randomly-placed geocache to another... A subtle difference!)
That all seems very negative, doesn’t it? It was such a shame. The person who’d put them out had clearly taken a lot of time and effort to put them out. Individually (apart from the poor co-ordinates) they worked, but they didn’t work together as a series.
But this is typical of what is going wrong in geocaching at the moment. There are a *lot* of people wanting to rush into hiding the things despite having very little experience of the hobby.

We finally got back to where we’d parked, and sat in the meadow and had a picnic. It was only after we’d scoffed that we realized this was the other side of the meadow in which dogs weren’t allowed. Whoops!
With sandwiches scoffed we went down the road to the Chequers were we sat in the garden for a couple of pints.

It would have been rather easy to have sat in the pub all afternoon, but we decided to crack on. Earlier I’d mentioned that today’s geocaching was a walk of two halves. The second half was far better than the first. We had a few field puzzles the information for which was soon found, and after the morning’s debacle it was so good to be operating with reliable co-ordinates. Given the hint of “base of post” we didn’t have an entire fence to search.

I took a few photos whilst we were out. Once home I posted them on-line, then fiddled about to get the most recent geocaching souvenir.
As I fiddled about, "Daddy’s Little Angel TM" phoned. She’d been watching the Margate carnival today. I can remember carnivals in Hastings when I was a lad. There were loads of floats and majorettes and all sorts of fun. I used to march with the Boys Brigade band in the carnivals. Ashford used to have carnivals back in the day. There were a few floats, and loads of vans carrying carnival queens (all behind metal meshes as the oiks would catapult pennies at them). Apparently Margate carnival featured a total of three floats, and was mostly just a load of businesses trying to hawk their wares.
I wonder why Ashford doesn’t have carnivals any more?

We had a rather good bit of dinner, then watched a couple more episodes of “Timeless”. I think I might see if I can solve a geo-puzzle or two in readiness for mid-week…

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