Sunday, September 30, 2007

Home to T.C.

It was a lovely day for a drive. We set out from Bay City, did 5 caches in 2 counties (Arenac and Gladwin), and now we have found a cache in every county in the Lower Peninsula. Yaaaay! We still have two counties to do in the U.P.

When we got home, Dick mowed the entire yard, and then we went into town to the bank and to Jiffy Lube. He also logged all of our latest finds, - he was the energizer bunny!

Yesterday was game day, and since the Big Ten Network and the cable company can't agree on a price structure, we couldn't see the game at home. Shooter's is a nice sports bar. It turned out to be a nice, loud, energetic, crowded, happy sports bar. The game began dismally, but the fourth quarter was delightful - we were very relieved and satisfied. Just wish that team would get its act together!


Henne, Wolverines Show Resolve With Win at Northwestern
Chad Henne set the U-M record for career touchdown passes with an 11-yard strike to Mario Manningham in the first quarter Saturday, Sept 29, as the Michigan football team defeated Northwestern, 28-16, on Ryan Field. NU racked up 309 yards by halftime to lead 16-7, but Henne threw his 74th career score -- a 5-yard shot to Carson Butler -- in the third quarter, and gave U-M the lead with a 16-yard bullet to Adrian Arrington with 9:53 remaining. The Wolverine defense then sealed the triumph, forcing four straight Wildcat turnovers.

I was surprised that so many people bring their children to the bar on a Saturday afternoon. One group of boys was wandering around all afternoon, totally at a loss for something to do, and nobody seemed to be in charge of them. I'm sure there were a dozen other places those boys would have rather been.

Today we're on our way back down to Ann Arbor for 2 more weeks.

Thursday, September 27, 2007


1.The Thumb is very, very agricultural - mostly navy beans, corn and sugar beets - especially sugar beets.

2. Port Huron is a really nice town - they have a lovely riverfront, and it's fun to look across to Canada. The Blue Water Bridge is huge. When we were there, the traffic entering the US was extremely slow and backed up.

3. A lot of the riverfront area is devoted to Thomas Edison, who spent part of his boyhood in Port Huron. There's a museum, statues, streets named after him, etc.

4. The world's fist International Railroad Tunnel connects Sarnia and Port Huron. Who knew?

5. Comfort Inn uses new, soft, luxurious pillows - 4 on each bed! I want to get some so I will also have a luxurious bed!

6. We saw funny street names in Port Huron - my favorite was Puttygut Street. Rattle Run is a good one too.

7. Free Wi-Fi doesn't always mean that you'll get a connection.

8. Croswell has a suspension footbridge - the longest in the US. There's a sign over it that says "Be Kind to Your Mother-In-Law". I think I'll send a picture of it to Chip! ;)

9. We saw an Asian couple at a rest area picnic table - they were cooking noodles on a camp stove. They never sat down, they never spoke to each other, and they ate their noodles with chopsticks from small yellow bowls - with their backs to each other!

10. If you order a hot turkey sandwich for lunch, tell them to go easy on the gravy!!!

11. The young desk clerk at the motel does not always know the best place for dinner.

12. Our new Garmin GPS is great for navigating in strange territory - nice complete maps and good directions. It helps the driver if the navigator reads what's coming up next, since it's obviously hard to drive and read the GPS at the same time!

13. It's still possible to get lost.

14. Long freight trains should not come to a halt in the center of town (Bay City).

15. A bee's nest can ruin a geocache search.

Dick's logs from 2 days of geocaching in the Thumb:

Didn 9/26/2007 You couldn't find WTA Hoo Goes There? (Traditional Cache)
Add us to the list of those who went to the tree with the hollow by the boundary fence and came up short.

Found it 9/26/2007 You found Capac Rest Area - 69W (Traditional Cache)
I turned the hunt for this cache into an adventure and one of my personal Geocaching triumphs. We are on a quest to find caches in each of Michigan’s 83 counties. A google map search spotted this one just across the county line into St Clair County. Due to a number of circumstances, I loaded the coordinates by hand. In the process I transposed a couple of numbers thus placing me 175 feet off. A glance at the bushwhacking involved determined that this was to be a solo push. Ironically, my cords put me within 10 feet of a good, although empty, hiding spot. After expanding the search out to 60 feet, I thought about where I would logically locate the hide and, eventually, voila!
I traded sigs and launched our coin “St Clair County” which commemorates our 50th wedding anniversary. Thanks for the fun.

Found it 9/26/2007 You found Prairies and Ponds at Oakwood (Traditional Cache)
This was a pretty quick find but you may want to reconsider the ratings. A wrong turn at either of the two forks will easily double the distance traveled and the last 50 feet is certainly not wheelchair accessible. Folks with disabilities will find this cache quite challenging for a 1/1. Took the TB and left a matchbox type car. Thanks for showing us this interesting park.

Didn 9/26/2007 You couldn't find Don't Call Me Bradley (Traditional Cache)
This was a defeat for us. Bummer! Don't know if we'll get back this way again soon.

Write note 9/26/2007 You posted a note for Quincy Mine Number 5 (Traditional Cache)
We bought a can of spray and hit the bees with it but it didn't seem to faze them so we didn't hunt the area. Somebody should do it at night or dawn.

Found it 9/26/2007 You found Flint River No. 1 (Traditional Cache)
We are on a quest to fill in our map of counties in which we have found caches. In each new (to us) county, we are selecting a cache in which to launch one of our coins which we designed to commemorate our 50th wedding anniversary. We placed our coin Lapeer County in this cache today. Thanks for providing us with a suitable place.

Found it 9/26/2007 You found Pins and Keyrings (Traditional Cache)
This cache is in an interesting park. We've never seen one with the barbed wire on the top of the chain link fence was angled to keep the inmates in. Looks like it would be a busy place in the summer. Found the cache but could not sign the soaked log book. The contents have become geojunk so we didn't add to the mess. The owner, out of consideration for his fellow cachers, should arrange for a local cacher to provide maintenance on it.

Found it 9/27/2007 You found Death or Taxes - RDL (Traditional Cache)
We were looking for a place to launch our Sanilac County coin but it's too small. We took some beads and left a National Lakeshore token. Thanks for the fun

Found it 9/27/2007 You found Welcome to Bad Axe (Traditional Cache)
Quick grab, nice container. Left a keychain. Thanks for the hunt.

Found it 9/27/2007 You found Yo Quiero Pollo Bell (Traditional Cache)
Quick grab on our way to the tip of the Thumb. We are looking for a spot to launch our Huron County coin but this guy is just too small so we just left our mini sig card. Thanks for the laugh.

Found it 9/27/2007 You found Park and Grab (Traditional Cache)
We are trying to paint the map of Michigan which shows the counties in which we have found caches a solid red. In conjunction with this quest, we are naming and launching one of our 50th Anniversary Commemorative Geocoins after each new county we add. We have never cached in the Thumb before. In fact, before this trip, we have never visited Huron County. After finding the cache, we signed the log, left our coin and a glass lady bug. Thanks for providing us with a spot to leave our Huron County coin.

Found it 9/27/2007 You found Petroglyph Cache (Traditional Cache)
After discovering the web site “It’s not about the Numbers” we set out on a quest to paint our Michigan map red. In conjunction with finding a cache in each county we have missed in the past, we are naming and launching one of our commemorative 50th Wedding Anniversary Geocoins in each. We spotted this cache and decided that a coin would probably fit in it and the unique area would be special. We are sorry that the protective structures are closed but it was an enjoyable walk back to the cache. We removed some geojunk and left our coin. Thanks for a great spot for the launch of our Sanilac County coin.
I traded sigs and launched our coin “St Clair County” which commemorates our 50th wedding anniversary. Thanks for the fun.
9/27/2007 You found Cedar Point (Traditional Cache)
On a drive down the coast we over thought this one and tried to make something out of the name. Soon corrected our mistake and scored the find. Signed the log and left our mini sig. TFTC

Found it 9/27/2007 You found TWT Series - Jenks Park (Traditional Cache)
Great little park. It was brisk today with a temp of 62 and a stiff wind off the lake. We traded a geopin for a pen. Thanks for a cache break on our drive along the coast.

Found it 9/27/2007 You found ALWAYS In Caro (Traditional Cache)
Thanks for the smilie. This was our first Tuscola County find.

Found it 9/27/2007 You found A Haiku for You (Traditional Cache)
We are trying to paint the map of Michigan which shows the counties in which we have found caches a solid red. In conjunction with this quest, we are naming and launching one of our 50th Anniversary Commemorative Geocoins after each new county we add. The poet on the team spotted this cache and decided it would be perfect place for our Tuscola County coin to begin its journey.

To celebrate our
Fiftieth Annivers'ry
We leave you this coin

There were only two TB's in the cache which we took, we left a deck of cards, a Matchbox car and of course our Tuscola County coin.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Saline

We're preparing for our weekend trip, so we did errands first - took back cans and bottles, started laundry, went downtown to the Federal Building to put a hold on our mail. began packing for real and also doing some mental packing - deciding which things we can take back to TC and which should stay here for the next 2 weeks. Reminds me of the old George Carlin routine about his "Stuff":

Sometimes you leave your house to go on vacation. And you gotta take some of your stuff with you. Gotta take about two big suitcases full of stuff, when you go on vacation. You gotta take a smaller version of your house. It's the second version of your stuff. And you're gonna fly all the way to Honolulu. Gonna go across the continent, across half an ocean to Honolulu. You get down to the hotel room in Honolulu and you open up your suitcase and you put away all your stuff. "Here's a place here, put a little bit of stuff there, put some stuff here, put some stuff--you put your stuff there, I'll put some stuff--here's another place for stuff, look at this, I'll put some stuff here..." And even though you're far away from home, you start to get used to it, you start to feel okay, because after all, you do have some of your stuff with you. That's when your friend calls up from Maui, and says, "Hey, why don'tchya come over to Maui for the weekend and spend a couple of nights over here."

Oh, no! Now what do I pack? Right, you've gotta pack an even SMALLER version of your stuff. The third version of your house. Just enough stuff to take to Maui for a coupla days. You get over to Maui--I mean you're really getting extended now, when you think about it. You got stuff ALL the way back on the mainland, you got stuff on another island, you got stuff on this island. I mean, supply lines are getting longer and harder to maintain. You get over to your friend's house on Maui and he gives you a little place to sleep, a little bed right next to his windowsill or something. You put some of your stuff up there. You put your stuff up there. You got your Visine, you got your nail clippers, and you put everything up. It takes about an hour and a half, but after a while you finally feel okay, say, "All right, I got my nail clippers, I must be okay." That's when your friend says, "Aaaaay, I think tonight we'll go over the other side of the island, visit a pal of mine and maybe stay over."

Aww, no. NOW what do you pack? Right--you gotta pack an even SMALLER version of your stuff. The fourth version of your house. Only the stuff you know you're gonna need.

We were very efficient getting things done, so we had time to head over to Saline to do some caching. We went back to Colony Park and we are still totally stumped by this hide. There's nowhere it can be. We've decided to ask for a hint. There were other successes, however:

Found it 9/25/2007 You found the old rail road (Traditional Cache)
This was a quick find on our second day visiting Saline. Don't think we've ever seen an old RR where the ties and tracks were left in place. Traded sigs and left a glass lady bug. Thanks for the hunt.

Found it 9/25/2007 You found Tour de Saline - Brecon Park II (Traditional Cache)
After spending a couple of hours over the past couple of days searching Colony Park, it felt good to find our first "Tour" cache. Signed the log and copied the numbers before we went for our next one. Thanks for the series. (We think)

Found it 9/25/2007 You found brecon park travel bug lodge (Traditional Cache)
Found it after finding another cache in the park. There is no log book so we signed the 3x5 card in the cache. Thanks for the hunt.

Found it 9/25/2007 You found Tour de Saline - Mill Pond Park (Traditional Cache)
Of the Saline parks we have visited thus far, this is our favorite. It seems to have everything including a Cross Country course. We found it quickly and after signing the log we traded a geopin for a bat. (BTW, the locs on one side are broken and the log book is damp.)

Found it 9/25/2007 You found as high as the sky (Traditional Cache)
We enjoyed the park. This was a fairly quick find, signed log and left our mini card. Thanks for the fun.

Found it 9/25/2007 You found Saline Parkside Cache (Traditional Cache)
This cache needs work. The contents are damp and the coords are about 35 feet off. It is not a particularly nice area. TNLNSL.

Found it 9/25/2007 You found Tour de Saline - Risdon / Peoples Park (Traditional Cache)
I found rrob’s cache in this park three years ago. I brought a couple of friends along to show them what caching is all about and how much fun it is. Well, these two guys figured this was the dumbest thing they’ve ever done. To them, the only reason to go for a walk is to beat on little white balls with a stick or to shoot small animals who are trying to get away. Different strokes. This was an easy find and finding a regular container was welcome. We traded sigs and left a pack of Crayolas for the next child who finds the cache. Regretfully, we ran out of time for today and had to leave Saline but we will be back, hopefully to finish the series.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Sweet Monday

The workout was as strenuous as always...we really needed iced tea at the end of it. Afterwards we went to the library to use the computers and the printer.

After lunch and a snooze at home, we went over to Saline to do some fun caching, except we didn't realize that the temp had zoomed up to 90, and it wasn't too conducive to active caching. We did mange to find two. The Rentschler Farm Museum one was the most fun - we looked and looked. We examined all of the old farm equipment in the shed, opened all of the containers we could find, and searched all of the rafters. Finally, a nice man, an ex-teacher who volunteers as handyman at the museum, came over to help us out. Without his help, I doubt we would have found it. But we had fun looking anyway! The Colony Park cache is very frustrating, and I think we'll be back over there maybe next week because now we just have to find it. We'll lay awake at night trying to figure out where it is!! But it was too hot to keep trying, so we stopped in at a store and bought salad stuff for dinner and called it a day.

Found it 9/24/2007 You found Base of the Past (Traditional Cache) ]
The farm brings back many memories both pleasant and unpleasant of when we were city kids who visited and “helped” on Uncle’s farm. In the thirties and forties many, if not most, still farmed with horses and the Binder and the Threshing machine had not yet been replaced by Combines. This is a great hide! May have to replicate it “Up North”. We looked at it a couple of times and this would have been a DNF had it not been for the encouragement of a friendly volunteer. Signed the log and left our card. Many thanks for the cache.

Found it 9/24/2007 You found Woodland Goats Gruff (Traditional Cache)
Very cute! Saline has sure changed since we used to drive through here 20 - 30 years ago. TFTC

9/24/2007 You couldn't find Tour de Saline - Colony Park (Traditional Cache)
Sometimes you bite the bear but sometimes the bear bites you. Today this bear took a great big chunk out of our hide. we will be back for another look.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

We Did It Again!

Well, we've done it again. We've had another perfectly wonderful day - beautiful weather, geocaching success, good company, and the Red Robin!

We began by finding caches in Eaton and Ionia counties - to fulfill our goal of finding caches in each Michigan county.

Found it 9/23/2007 You found Bennett's Got Cache (Traditional Cache)
We used a luncheon appointment in Lansing as an excuse to add Eaton County to our list of counties in which we have found caches. We saw that Us Two had this cache that was large enough for our purposes.
When we learned of the web site "It's not about the numbers" last summer, we decided to fill in our map and find a cache in each of the rest of Michigan’s 83 counties and use one to launch one of our 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coins.
This hunt took us a great deal longer than it should have because we just could not get a decent fix. We used three different GPSr’s and for some reason they all indicated that the cache was over 100 feet from where we found it however, by the time we finished signing the log and leaving our coins, they had all narrowed the distance down to less than 20 feet.
We traded sigs and left a couple of coins. Thanks for the hunt D&E.

Found it 9/23/2007 You found When Bennett Met Frances (Traditional Cache)
We think that since we had a little extra time, you can’t do one without the other. Found the cache about 12:30, traded sigs and left a geopin. Thanks for showing us this nice park.
9/23/2007 You found Courthouse Roundup (Traditional Cache)
In town for a quick stop to add Eaton County to our list. This is a neat area but the container is not large enough for us to drop a coin. We just signed the log and drove back to Camp Frances. Thanks for the fun.

Found it 9/23/2007 You found Okemos (Traditional Cache)
This was a quick stop to add Ionia County to our list of counties in which we have logged caches. We appreciated the history lesson. Found the cache easily, signed the log and left a Jeep. Thanks for the hunt.

The best part of the day was spending the afternoon with John and Sharon in Lansing. We had a super time - a little reminiscing, a little gossip, a little family news, a little bragging about grandchildren (ahem), and watching the wedding video of Kevin and Amy. That was the highlight! Their wedding was a very joyful event, and watching it all was almost like being there. At their reception you could tell that everyone was having a really good time. Derek's toast to his brother was very touching, and Kevin's dancing was impressive.

Dinner at the Red Robin was nice. And the conversation was even better. We never seem to run out of things to talk about.
We've had a lovely day.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Holy Moley, Birthday Boy!

Happy Birthday to Dick!

The Michigan Football Team gave him a big, big gift today - they beat Penn State 14-9!
OK, so it wasn't exactly a blow-out, but it was a nice, hard-hitting win, and very satisfying. We are liking our freshman quarterback from Texarkana - he's doing a fine job.

To be absolutely honest, I didn't expect a win today. I was just hoping that we would play well and not get blown out, and that the team wouldn't embarrass themselves. Well, I got my wish and then some. It was a most pleasant day in every pleasant way.


Football Upsets No. 10 Penn State in Big Ten Opener

Brandon Graham charged a hard-hitting Wolverine defense with two tackles for loss, a first-half forced fumble -- which led to a Ryan Mallett rushing touchdown -- and a second-half fumble recovery Saturday, Sept. 22, as the U-M football team shut down No. 10-ranked Penn State, 14-9, in the Big Ten opener in Michigan Stadium. Michael Hart equaled the defense's intensity, chewing up 153 tough yards on 44 carries, and clinching the Michigan triumph with a one-yard TD plunge in the fourth quarter.

When Michael Hart rushed for more than 100 yards today, they announced that he now holds the all time U of M record for 100+ yard career games. Then the crowd chants Mi-chael Hart, Mi-chael Hart. When he ran again for a first down, the announcer said First Down Michael Hart instead of First Down Michigan. I'm sure it will be a memorable afternoon for him.

Before the game, we located cousin Rick - we knew he would be selling pizza - and went over to say hi. I gave him a 50th anniversary coin for Good Luck.

We began the day with Dick cooking bacon and scrambled eggs for a birthday breakfast. This time we didn't set off the smoke alarm. Then we went over to Kohl's, which is just around the corner, because they were have a Super Sale from 7 until 1. Dick wanted shorts, but came home with two great bags - one for his new laptop and one for geocaching, and a new Michigan windbreaker. It was a great sale, which I can say even though I didn't find anything in the women's department.

It was another perfect day. The weather was great, the game was thrilling, our parking place is spectacular, the walk is easy, and everything works out splendidly!.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Ann Arbor Impressions

Happy Birthday Jana Louise!

We've been exercising every Monday, Wednesday and Friday here in Ann Arbor at the Von Maur Court in Briarwood Mall. I estimate that there are usually 40 - 50 participants of all kinds - male, female, white, black, and Asian, short, tall, skinny and fat. The oldest one appears to be in her 80s. One of the Asian women appears to be in her 30s or maybe even younger. Everybody is friendly and encouraging - there are all different levels of physical fitness ranging from the perkiest lady who bounces through all of the routines and then bounces out of the mall on her way home to the lady who sits through most of the exercises and does small movements with her arms and legs. The important thing about the fitness class is showing up and making an effort. We can feel it - Dick says the instructor finds all of your arthritis every time! When I get winded or my leg muscles feel too sore, I just sit down and take a mini-break - and it's all OK.

The city of Ann Arbor is in constant transition. It seems that everywhere you look, streets are closed for construction, and buildings are either going up or coming down.

It's hard to navigate in the downtown area - there are so many closed streets, and so many one way streets. We're finding that our little Subaru is maneuverable and easy to get around in.

On country roads in southern Michigan the underbrush and forest areas grow right up to the edge of the shoulders. It makes for very picturesque country roads, but I find that after living for the past 16 years in Grand Traverse County, I'm really used to the trimming, mowing and pruning along our roads. You can have that North Woods feeling, and still feel like you have some elbow room. Also, there are a lot of vines here that grow up into the trees and give them an unusual appearance - sometimes feels like you're driving through a Grimm Brother's fairy tale.

Which restaurant would you expect to be the most fun and delicious - Red Robin, a nationwide chain famous for burgers and spirits or Zingerman's Roadhouse, an offshoot of Zingerman's Deli, a local Ann Arbor favorite... Well, the Red Robin wins, hands down. It was so much fun - and the menu is different and interesting - it makes you want to come back and try something else! Zingerman's food was only so-so. We ate outside on the patio and were assaulted by flies. It was a real turn off.

Our apartment is just grand. I'm not sure what I expected, but it is more than satisfactory. We love it here, and we're having a wunnerful time!

Washtenaw/Ann Arbor Cachapalooza

The best challenge so far has been Fezzik's Views of Ann Arbor. It's a 5 stage multi-cache in Ann Arbor parking structures! The stages are all micros except for the final. They all require something special - decoding, unscrambling, head-scratching, hindu numerals, and research. When Dick discovered the final, we felt triumphant, ecstatic, excited, relieved and joyful! We loved this series so much that we named one of our 50th coins "Ann Arbor" and placed it in the cache. Then we noticed that the coin was picked up by Edward Applebee later the same day!
September 21 by basswoodbend (1407 found)
This has been a blast! Thanks for the imagination and effort that was expended in its creation. We have spent quite a bit of time and effort on this hunt over the past couple of weeks. Only one of the stages resulted in us proceeding directly to the next. The rest required us to sit back and cogitate for a day or two before the light bulbs were turned on and we saw how to proceed to the next goal. Scoring the final today gives us both a great sense of accomplishment. We signed the log, left our card and a geopin. We also took the Red Jeep. Since we are not sure which other Washtenaw County caches we might find, we only “Discovered” the Dilla.
We have created a coin to commemorate our 50th wedding anniversary and have been placing them in selected caches around the state. Since this is our favorite cache in our second favorite city, we traded the one we have named “Ann Arbor” for the coin that was in the cache.
Thanks and kudos to the Rodents for this creation. We greatly enjoyed the hunt.

We've done a couple of other quests in the area. Where the Road Ends was a fairly easy one. I was looking in the wrong place, but Dick came up with it. We really enjoyed doing Victory Mike's caches. The one by his front door was really fun and unique. We were hoping to see him, but he evidently wasn't home.
Found it 9/20/2007 You found Where the ROAD ENDS (Traditional Cache)
Nice park and grab. We traded cards and left a McToy. Thanks for the fun.

Found it 9/20/2007 You found Welcome Home Again (Traditional Cache)
This has been on our list for a couple of years but we just couldn't find our "Round To It". We finally brought it with us today. At the first stage, we traded a game pack and some bug wipes for a screwdriver and a Martha pin. At the final, we went "Knock Knock" but sadly, VM was not home. we are sorry we missed you. Maybe another time. We signed that log and left a geopin. Thanks for the hunt.

After that, Dick did a 4 or 5 stage multi-cache in Lillie Park, Pittsfield Township. It involved a lot of walking, so he dropped me off at home. He was gone for about an hour and a half, so I was glad I wasn't trying to walk it with him! He was successful, and he had a good time doing it.

Found it 9/20/2007 You found Lillie Park Nature Walk (Multi-cache)
This is a great cache! A walk in a great park and challenging set of puzzles, with a traditional container at the finish. When we first came to the area in the 50’s, this was an active gravel pit. At one point in time it was being considered for a garbage dump. This is much better. Because, when given the opportunity, I have a tendency to make the wrong choice, I turned the hunt in to more of a physical challenge than it needs to be. The route I chose led me to walk past the site of the final three times while collecting the clues. Found it this afternoon at about 5:30 and traded bug wipes and sun bloc for a poncho and left a TB. Thanks for the hunt and showing me what has been done to this old gravel pit.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Travel Plans

Sunday the 23rd we're going to Lansing to have lunch with Sharon and John.

Wednesday the 26th we're leaving our cute apartment and going to spend a couple of days caching in the thumb. Spending Wednesday night in Port Huron, and Thursday night in Bay City.

We'll spend Friday night and Saturday night at home in Traverse City, and lucky Dick will have a chance to mow the grass, and I will have a chance to play World of Warcraft - Dylan is waiting! We'll come back down to Oak Valley Drive on Sunday the 30th or maybe on Monday - we'll see how it goes.

We are really enjoying being footloose and fancy free more than I can tell you. Life is good and we're enjoying it. We're planning to rent a condo in Florida sometime in February. We're taking a cruise to the Baltic in May with the Sniders.

Loverly. :)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Laberdee & Lenawee

Today we did some power caching and placed our coin for Monroe County and for Lenawee County. There are so many micros in SE Michigan that it's hard to find a container that can hold the coin!

It was a beautiful day for a drive, and we found some wonderful places. For instance, neat, well-manicured farms with great flower gardens and green, green lawns. Also nice new roads, and pretty new subdivisions. My favorite road name was Laberdee in Lenawee County. It made me giggle to think of how silly it would be if someone named Larabee lived on Laberdee in Lenawee! Whee!

We ate lunch at Tiffany's Pizza in Dundee - another double e word! While we were there, we saw a really attractive family, two of whom were Little People.

In a Lenawee County Park, Dick found 2 caches. It was interesting because there were orange cones all over the place - Dick said that it was probably for a cross country meet. Sure enough, when the cone-setters came by on their utility vehicle, they said that 12 cross country teams would be there at 4 p.m.

We were totally bummed by not being able to find a cemetery cache which was listed as a park and grab, so it should have been the easiest - but even though we went there twice, we couldn't find it. I found a cache in Adrian's Heritage Park, and so that was fun! Altogether we found 7, which is good. We left home at 8:30 and got back at 4:30 - a full day!
Dick's logs:
9/18/2007 You found Amber's Hidden Cache (Traditional Cache)
We are on a quest to find a cache in each of Michigan’s 83 counties. It is interesting to observe the regional differences in cache types. We have been chuckling about what appears to be a micro fetish in the southern part of the state. This cache is in a neat area of a very nice park. It cracked us up. The Ziploc could easily contain a full sized log book and numerous trade items, instead, complying with the regional preference, it contains a micro container. TN,LN,SL,TFTC

Didn 9/18/2007 You couldn't find Team Rod & Tod's First Park & Grab (Traditional Cache)
The cords repeatedly took us to a set of tomb stones and the bushes by them. We found some great spots across the road but couldn't find the cache.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found "R" E.R. (Traditional Cache)
Yeah! A regular sized cache! We are working on finding a cache in each of Michigan’s 83 counties. In each new county that we find we are launching one of our 50th Anniversary coins so we need a container large enough to contain it. The plethora of micros in this area has made it difficult. Thank you for giving us a container large enough for our Lenawee County coin. Launched it and dropped off another. We traded bug wipes and glow sticks for a McToy and hand sanitizer. Thanks for the hunt.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found Tamarack Cache (Traditional Cache)
This summer we established a goal that we want to have found a cache in each of Michigan’s 83 counties by next July. In each new county that we find we are launching one of our 50th Anniversary commemorative coins. Today we placed our Monroe County coin in this cache. This was an easy find and the container was a welcome break from the barrage of micro’s we have been experiencing. The trash in the area of the cache was disconcerting, who but our fellow cachers would come back here? We took a Wizard and a bag of trash, left our coin and a Spiro game. The zip lock was torn so we replaced it. We managed to avoid entering Cabela’s so we took our money with us too. Thanks for placing a cache that was big enough for our coin.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found Dundee's Dam (Traditional Cache)
Long before Geocaching, we visited this area on numerous occasions. The coordinates were about 40 feet off for us. They placed us in the middle of the parking lot. We were looking for a container large enough for a geocoin and thought this park could hold one but overlooked the southern Michigan micro fetish. Found after a short search, wish I’d had gloves or a larger mirror. We signed the log and left a “Luck of the Irish” token to celebrate their 38 zip effort at The Big House Saturday.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found SQ - Piece Of Cake (Traditional Cache)
Fascinating cemetery. We notice that there seem to be a lot of these caches in southern Michigan. Maybe this is because of a lack of public lands down here in the "Flat Lands". LN,TN,SL,TFTC.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found Forgotten, But Not Lost (Traditional Cache)
Wow! A traditional sized container! We loved it! The park was being set up for a CC meet but since they were riding in little ATV’s they couldn’t sneak up on us. Left a box of Crayolas and replaced a torn baggie. Thanks for the break from micros.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found Podunk Michigan (Unknown Cache)
This must have taken a lot of work. Very nice hide. A couple of coaches were setting up a big CC meet and they almost caught us. TN,LN,SL,TFTC.

Found it 9/18/2007 You found Michigan Rt.23 (Traditional Cache)
The container is busted and the contents were on the ground. The log book is soaked. We removed the TB and replaced the cache as best we could but it really needs work. Not sure this rest area needs two.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

WooWoo !!

This was a glorious, spectacular day! We were blessed with perfect weather - blue sky with picturesque clouds, temps in the 60s - the perfect football day!

Tim and Susie came around noon for burgers at the apartment. Dick cooked on the grill, Susie brought tasty blondie brownies, and everything was yummy. We had a great time talking about everything from geo-caching to bathroom hardware! Left for the game around 2 p.m., not really knowing what to expect, but ready for anything! Literally!

The game turned out to be as perfect as the day. Michigan won easily, and I had forgotten how much fun it is to win! The colors seemed so vivid today - everything stood out - especially the student section. It was "maize out" day, and they were all wearing yellow, and had yellow shakos, and it was a brilliant sight. I hope that Tim and Susie enjoyed it all as much as we did!


Defense Dominates as Football Crushes Notre Dame
Powered by Shawn Crable's five tackles for loss Saturday, Sept. 15, the U-M football team blanked Notre Dame, 38-0, in Michigan Stadium. Crable and the defense dominated early, forcing three first-half Irish turnovers to give freshman QB Ryan Mallett -- in his first collegiate start -- and the U-M offense good field position all afternoon. Mallett capitalized, leading Michigan to four first-half touchdowns, including two by Michael Hart -- who racked up 187 rushing yards -- and TD grabs by Adrian Arrington and Greg Mathews.

Afterwards we had pizza back at the apt., and had an afterglow review of the game. It was a fine, fine day.

Friday, September 14, 2007


Jan and I met at the Showcase Cinema for movies and popcorn! We saw Rush Hour 3 - it was funny, and full of action. Jan loves Jackie Chan - and he really is fun to watch. The movie went really fast, and it certainly wasn't boring! You try dueling on top of the Eiffel Tower! (Everybody was kung fu fighting.) The outtakes at the end were fun, too.

We met Dick and Bill at Applebee's for dinner, and then those two went to the Belleville football game. Southgate beat Belleville 13-6. This seems to be the year for losing football seasons. I went home and went to bed - time to catch up on some zzzzzz's.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Coldwater Thursday

Today we wanted to place one of our coins in Branch County, which turned out to be much more of a challenge than we expected!

We finally did 5 caches, but a three of them were micros and not big enough for a coin. We attempted more caches, but 2 of them eluded us - very frustrating! Oh well - it was a beautiful day for a drive, we had a nice lunch at Los Tequilas, and we got acquainted with Coldwater - a nice town.

I'm still not feeling 100% (my legs are still worn out from yesterday) but you can have a good time if you've a mind to! We finally did place our Branch County coin in the bee box cache. It was a long drive home. Stopped at Busch's for groceries for dinner.

Here are Dick's logs for today:
9/13/2007 You found bee box (Traditional Cache)
We are on a quest to find caches in all of Michigan’s 83 counties. We are naming one of our coins which commemorate our 50th wedding anniversary for each of the remaining counties we visit. Today we visited Coldwater to log Branch County and to find a cache in which we can launch our coin for this county. We didn’t have a very good day. We had picked out a cache but sadly, it was the first of three DNF’s we had to log today. That was followed by a couple of caches that were too small. Thankfully we found another of The Bucket brigade’s caches. We left our coin and a chalkboard kit. Thanks for a cache we could find and in which our coin would fit.

Found it 9/13/2007 You found 151 (Traditional Cache)
This was our first find in Branch County. Little did we know that soon we would think that it might be our last. We were a little uncomfortable looking in a private yard but saw the hiding spot from the street. Traded TB’s and left a chalkboard set. Thanks for the fun.

Found it 9/13/2007 You found Relax! It's the Best Medicine. (Traditional Cache)
We were in Coldwater adding Branch County to our list of counties cached in today. Because of a set of circumstances, we were out with a new Garmin GPS that we have not yet mastered. Luckily, as we were thrashing around trying to figure it out, Hunster showed up just in time to give us lessons. Thanks to him, we have a better grasp of it. This is a very peaceful spot. Thanks for showing it to us.

Found it 9/13/2007 You found Take a Breather (Traditional Cache)
A quick easy find that we needed after three straight skunks. Thanks for the hunt.

Found it 9/13/2007 You found If You Hide It They Will Come (Traditional Cache)
We had hoped that our coin would fit here but it's just a bit small. We left a geo pin and a Basswood Bend pencil. thanks for the hunt.

Didn 9/13/2007 You couldn't find A Tribute to George (Unknown Cache)
We are on a quest to find a cache in each of Michigan’s 83 counties. In each new county we are launching one of our 50th anniversary commemorative coins. We had hoped to start our Branch County coin here. Unfortunately, we are not wise enough wizards to solve the puzzle for this cache. We pushed and pulled, tugged and twisted but feared that we might force it and break something. We also searched all of the nearby objects for the hint but –
Oh Well.

Didn 9/13/2007 You couldn't find Superstitious (Traditional Cache) [
Dang! Two in a row! Coldwater is not being kind to us today.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Whatta Wednesday!

The day began at Briarwood with a very intense workout. In fact, it was so intense that it affected me for the rest of the day. I can't keep up - it's too fast and too jumpy for me. I love the slow stuff, but the "dancing" stuff is very hard and very far from my flexibility abilities. Perhaps as we continue for a few more weeks, it will get easier. We've learned that the instructor is a dancer, and has a studio of his own. No wonder that he is so fit and agile and flexible!

When we left we went to do a fun cache by the ex-ChiChi's - I loved it because I figured it out and actually found it! This is a rare occurrence and almost made up for ruining my otherwise perfect body at the workout.

Found it 9/12/2007 You found MI first time. (Unknown Cache)
When I read the description I knew just where to look. We have stayed at this motel before and I knew just where someone would go for a cuppa first thing in the morning. Fortunately, one member of the team actually reads things like manuals and cache pages. As I marched off in the wrong direction, she flagged me down and turned me around. Then, when we were at the cache site and I was burning quarters on everything in sight, she saved us by retrieving the cache from right under my nose. Fun hide. Thanks for the fun.

We met fellow geo-cachers Wolverine Warrior and Pairomedicchick for lunch. It was a Greek restaurant (the Parthenon) at the corner of Main and Liberty, so we all had yummy gyros. Justin had his daughter, Baby Alexis with him - and she's as cute as a button. I enjoyed talking to Kathy about her job at the jail in Battle Creek (!).

We went home and took a nap - following which I had some severe cramping in both legs (thanks a lot, fitness class) - but quinine always fixes the cramps.

In the evening we drove over to Southfield for the SE MiGO Meet and Eat. We're not used to driving in quitting time traffic - it was quite an experience driving through Detroit and Southfield in bumper to bumper traffic going 80 mph - wow! Thanks to Dick's amazing driving skill, we arrived in one piece right on time. Wow - what a lot of people! Wow! What a noisy Panera Bread! I think it may have been the noisiest place I've ever been, with the possible exception of a zydeco bar in Port Aransas. We saw lots of great people, and really enjoyed visiting with everybody (what? what?), especially TypoWiz and Number One Wife, SammyPants, HomeBru, Rattrak, Team TopKat, Son of Cyclops, Nurse Nana, Goldfinch, and many more. It was fun listening to SammyPants and TypoWiz reminiscing about growing up in Williamsburg, of all places! It was a fun time - the people were the star attraction - the food was only so-so.
Attended 9/12/2007 You attended September's Monthly S.E. MiGO Meet & Eat (Event Cache) [visit log]
We had a great time! Thanks for the Flatlander hospitality. We enjoyed talking to geofriends we have met before and it was great to meet some who have logged some of our TC caches. With luck we will be able to be here next month.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Chelsea & Dexter

What a lovely day we had today! Breakfast at Big Boy, coffee and wi-fi at Espresso Royale, Off to Chelsea to begin some fun caching. My favorite was the series called Healthy Communities - very clever containers, hides, and puzzles. We loved it. Dick is the champion finder of the Western world! We drove back through Dexter, and along Huron River Drive - very nostalgic. We have always loved this area.

Tim and Susie came over to go out to dinner with us - that's always enjoyable! We went to Joe's Crab Shack, and Susie and Dick had crabs and shrimp up to their elbows! It was a great way to end the day.

Here are Dick's logs for today:
9/11/2007 You found Washtenaw Steps Up! (Traditional Cache)
A great day for some caches in the Chelsea area. We saw this series and decided to give it a try. Not being familiar with the area any more, the long way was the route chosen. Found the cache after a brisk walk and signed the log, grabbed the cords and left a ladybug.

9/11/2007 You found Michigan Steps Up! (Traditional Cache)
We were in Chelsea for the afternoon and chose to do this series. We loved this hide! Thanks for the effort and creativity. Traded TBs and left some puzzle books in exchange for some wet ones. We replaced the cache and got in the car, then we remembered to get the coordinates for the Healthy Comunities. Thanks for the fun.

9/11/2007 You found Healthy Communities (Unknown Cache)
We were in Chelsea for an afternoon of geocaching and we are glad we chose to do this series. Great concept, fun creative hides and nice areas. We enjoyed the series immensely, thanks for the adventure. We swapped TBs and traded a stuffed bunny for the water bomb toy.

9/11/2007 You found Random Kindness (Traditional Cache)
To do justice to this cache and its owner we know that we should compose a lengthy tome. Regretfully, we know that we won't do it justice. We were in Chelsea for an afternoon of geocaching and reminiscing. We often came for rides out in this area when we were first married 50 years ago. Many things have changed but it is surprising how much has not. When we arrived, the park was empty except for a tot on the playground and his minder. We quickly found the cache, traded sigs, and left a slate for the next child who visits it. Thanks Nurse Nanna for the fun.

9/11/2007 You found Historic Oak Grove (Traditional Cache)
An interesting hide, we found it after a short search. We had the area to ourselves except for a couple of dog walkers. Thanks for the hunt.

9/11/2007 You found Which way to Montpelier??? (Traditional Cache
There seem to be a lot of cemetery caches in this area. This was an easy find. we took a TB and left a geopin. Thanks for the hunt.

9/11/2007 You found ODS Seed - To Michigan From Ohio (Traditional Cache)
Not a park and grab but almost. thanks for the fun.

This is the sixth anniversary of the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. I'm expecting that this country will observe this anniversary in the future the same way that we now observe the anniversary of Pearl Harbor, and D Day. This evening I watched a documentary about trying to recover human remains from Ground Zero. So many people worked so hard for so long to try to recover and identify remains - a horrible job - Well Done.

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Dick fixed a great breakfast for all of us - it was so great that it set off the smoke alarm! It was very piercing, and we didn't know how to de-activate it. Opening the doors and getting cross-ventilation seemed to be the best remedy! What a relief when that was over.

We enjoyed talking to Tom and Peter - it was so much fun. Tom called Dylan and it was interesting to listen to one side of the conversation :)

We left for the game around 2 p.m. Tom and Peter went over to Steve's tailgate. Dick and I went to the stadium early to watch the Oregon Ducks and our Wolverines warm up. Tony and Sharon, Kim and Noah, and "Little" George were all there, but George and Alice didn't come this week.

The game was tragic again - very hard to watch. I think the last time I saw swarms of people leaving the stadium before the 4th quarter began was sometime in the 60s. One good thing about having the team play horribly for the entire game is that when it's over, you're not shocked at the loss.


Michigan Cannot Slow Oregon in Second Straight Loss
The Michigan football team suffered its second consecutive loss to start the season, dropping a 39-7 decision to Oregon on Saturday, Sept. 8, in Michigan Stadium. After an early field goal gave the Ducks a 3-0 edge, Adrian Arrington made an acrobatic grab of a Chad Henne pass for a seven-yard touchdown play, putting the Wolverines ahead 7-3 with 5:29 left in the first quarter. However, Oregon answered quickly on an 85-yard TD pass by Dennis Dixon, who threw for three scores and ran for another in the contest.

We went home and watched Penn State embarrass Notre Dame. We play ND next weekend - we're calling it the Battle of the Midgets!

Today would have been Mom's 99th birthday. We all know for sure that she's glad to have missed her birthday. We were thinking of her today.

Friday, September 07, 2007


This morning was our first workout at Briarwood. It is led by a man from the Dept. of Kinesiology at U of M. There were a lot of participants, and some of them were as young as we are! It's a good workout, even though the first half is done while seated in a folding chair. Dick couldn't believe how good it was. There are certain parts of the standing segment that I can't do because my left foot won't cooperate by moving quickly - but on the whole, I can do everything and it's fun, and it's not intimidating!

Tom and Peter arrived this evening - they ordered pizza delivered to our place on their way over - we had fun visiting until 11 or so. It's a 3:30 game tomorrow, so we'll have lots of time to talk with them.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Another Great Day

We spent the day with Doug and Odette. It began with lunch at Europa Bistro in downtown Rochester Hills - a very lovely spot.

We spent the afternoon chatting, reviewing history, catching up on family, and just generally swapping stories. We both had a really nice time and came home feeling very mellow.

Since we've been in Ann Arbor, we've been going every morning to Espresso Royale so that we can use the computer. We don't usually have very good internet connection at the apartment, but tonight it's working fine! I don't understand how the wi-fi can come and go!

We're looking forward to the arrival of Peter and Tom tomorrow night - the excitement is mounting!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Just Like Old Times

Belleville Retirees breakfast at the Bomber in Ypsi: Jan and Bill, Ken, Diane, Leon, Dan, Dorothy, Dennis, John Preston, Jim Fitch, and a bunch of ladies at the other end of the table that I never really knew, but had heard of. Enjoyable conversation - it's nice to hear about everybody's grandchildren! Jim has a 21 year old grand daughter - geez!

Ypsi is still as down-at-heel as it ever was. The city doesn't seem able to pull itself out of the doldrums. It's quite depressing.

After breakfast we drove through Our old Ypsi neighborhood. Our house at 2230 David looks awful - no landscaping at all. It's hard to believe that all of the time, money, and effort that went into all of those trees and shrubs is now totally gone.

On to Belleville. It looks fine - pretty much the same. It was a little off-putting to see fans in the windows at the high school - just a little low-tech? Haggerty Road looks great. Our house looks fine - The brick sidewalk has been replaced, the siding is a nice colonial blue, the rail fencing is all gone, the lilacs have been removed, and there are no plantings out by the road - but there is new landscaping and it looks nice. Even Schettler's house looks good these days. Riggses have a nice new road fence - combo of shrubbery and brick pillars - very sharp looking. David B. has Mlsna's house for sale - rumor has it that he wants to sell the house separate from the rest of the property and do some sub-dividing.

We spent the rest of the day at Snider's enjoying Eric's family! Baby Emily is a chubby-cheeked charmer - very sweet-tempered and enjoyable! Ethan is a big boy - not quite 3. He greeted me with "Hi, Grandma Nancy." I took some pictures, and I'll add them here at the end of September when we're home for a couple of days. Ethan is very polite and well-behaved, and as Dick says, he's a sharp little guy! Eric and Tammy are doing a great job with their kids! Jan cooked dinner for all of us and we have a great time. It was the first time I had a chance to see their finished basement - what a nice place!

Tomorrow we'll visit Doug and Odette.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Wild Goose Chase

For some reason, Garmin is making it very hard for us to equip our new GPS with maps. After two trips to Cabela's in Dundee, and today's trip to REI in Northville, we still don't have the proper chip with the Michigan maps. I really don't understand why the maps are not readily available. It's very frustrating. We've bought 2 different chips now, and neither one fits our unit. The ironic part is that Dick selected this GPS because he especially liked the maps.

Yesterday we went geocaching in Hillsdale county and found six. It was a fun and interesting day. If you find yourself in Jonesville at lunchtime, just skip the Hilltop Diner. When we got home, Dick bought a cheap grill on sale at KMart, came home and put it together. So now we can grill anytime. We have an outside storage unit - it was empty - so now we have something to put in it!

Sunday Sniders came over to see our apartment. We spent the afternoon swapping stories and catching up on everybody, and eating pizza. Nice time!

Here are Dick's logs from our 6 Labor Day caches:

You found Rollin N Hillsdale (Traditional Cache)
We stopped today while adding Hillsdale County to our list. It is an interesting area. Lots of fathers taking their kids fishing on this beautiful Labor Day. Took 0, left our card and some game notebooks. Thanks for the hunt.

Found it 9/3/2007 You found Stock up (Traditional Cache)
We are on a quest to log caches in each of Michigan's 83 counties. Labor Day it was Hillsdale's turn. The descriptive BYOP threw us. We expected a much smaller container. However, even though there is a pen in the cache, the log book is wet and the cache needs work. We enjoyed our tour of Hillsdale and visiting many of the parks. Thanks for the fun.

Found it 9/3/2007 You found MIgeokids first Hide (Traditional Cache)
We are on a quest to find a cache in each Michigan county, today was Hillsdale. We enjoyed driving and visiting many parks and cemeteries in the area. We found this cache to be in mosquito heaven. Slather up with bug dope. The cache needs work. The contents, including the log book are wet, The pen is inoperative. We placed our sticker and sprinted back to the car hotly pursued by the insect swarm. The cache really does need attention.

Found it 9/3/2007 You found Munro Honeymoon Cache (Traditional Cache)
We are on a quest to find a cache in each of Michigan's counties. In each county we are picking a cache to launch one of our coins that we had created to commemorate our 50th wedding anniversary. This cache is the perfect place to begin the journey of our Hillsdale coin. We spoke with the B&B owner, the boys weren't interested, too hot we think. We think that it's amazing that a B&B in Jonesville could attract visitors from 60 different countries.

Found it 9/3/2007 You found SQ East Hill (Traditional Cache)
We spent the day in Hillsdale county adding to our list of counties in which we have found caches. This is number 70. We found the cache easily but discovered that the log book is full and wet. It needs attention. Thanks for the hunt

Found it 9/3/2007 You found MOSCOW PLAINS SPIRIT QUEST (Traditional Cache)
We spent Labor Day caching in Hillsdale county. This was our final as we drove back to Ann Arbor. What an interesting spot. We wish we had more time to poke around but we have other places to go and things to do.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

App. State

The Appalachian State football team just put Michigan fans into an altered state.

We have just witnessed an historic event - holy cow - Appalachian State beat Michigan 34-32. I was confident that Mich would pull it out there at the end, but holy horrors, Batman, it didn't happen!

On the radio last night the overnight people were saying things like "Well, if Appalacian State can beat Michigan, anything can happen." People who keep track of statistics say that never ever once has a Division IAA team beat a fifth ranked Division I team. Well, maybe once in 1782. Or something. It's also been a long time since M lost a home opener, and Michigan hasn't lost 3 games in a row since Hector was a pup. (OSU, Rose Bowl, and today.)

Once long ago I learned a philosophy that concerned loving your children - that the one you love the most is the one who's farthest away, or the one who's in the most trouble, or the one who is the sickest. We may end the season loving this Michigan football team the most.


Appalachian State's Late FG Upsets Football in Opener

Mike Hart rushed for 188 yards on 23 carries, including a brilliant 54-yard go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter, but it wasn't enough as Appalachian State upset the No. 5 U-M football team, 34-32, Saturday, Sept. 1, in Michigan Stadium. The speedy Mountaineers owned a 28-17 halftime lead, but Michigan rebounded, scoring two touchdowns to take a 32-31 lead in the fourth quarter. However, ASU's Julian Rauch hit a 24-yard FG with 26 seconds remaining, and Jason Gingell's 37-yard attempt for U-M was blocked.

After the game, we went down to Cabela's in Dundee to get a map chip for the new Garmin GPS, and had dinner at Lone Star. We're seeing Sniders tomorrow.