Priorities change in caching

Jul 02

My geocaching adventures started in March 2008. A few weeks prior, a friend came to me with this “game he found.” And, considering he had GPS receivers, he thought it sounded interesting.

On a snowy winter day, we ventured out to seek some geocaches. Trekking through snow, and digging around, we ended up finding five that day. What a fun little game this was. People hid stuff, we found it. Rinse, repeat.

Good times.

That exposed me to a whole new world. This “treasure hunt” of sorts was something that needed to be expanded in my world – and it was.

Geocaching and the changing priorities to go with the game.

Geocaching and the changing priorities to go with the game.

On a recent episode of the Geocaching Podcast, the hosts talked about geocaching priorities and how they’ve changed. Basically, it’s an evolution of one’s thoughts and actions in the game.

It made me think a little, too.

My priorities in geocaching certainly have changed. When I first started, it was a fun game to go out and see what was hidden. It was also different back in 2008. There were fewer caches. People didn’t rush out for FTFs (first to finds) within minutes.

But the game – just like the players – evolves over the years. There are more ways to play (smart phones etc.) that make it easier for people to come and go. There’s more of a rush to get caches hidden, which results is more “meh” hides. There are people who post finds from their couch, which makes no sense. What’s the point if you don’t actually find it?

To each their own.

But after listening to the hosts, I thought this would make for a good blog post as my priorities in the game have change immensely since I started.

My first find came on March 1, 2008. That means, counting up to the day this post is published, I’ve been caching for 7 years, 123 days. That’s a long time.

And over that time, I have 4,000 finds. To me, that’s quite a few. Others in a span shorter than mine, have gone well beyond 10,000 finds, so it’s all relative. I’ve gone through some different phases in geocaching, too. And if you look at my statistics, you’d definitely see that.

I scored 686 finds in my first year and then found 1,030 in my second. I haven’t been close to that number since (my highest since then is 539 in 2012). On that note, I’ve found more this year already (236) than I did last year (227), and I have six months left to go. I also have some great caching trips planned, so that will be fun.

So where have my priorities changed?

Well, to start, I still enjoy geocaching a ton. It’s a fun outdoor activity that gets me out and about and brings me to places I never likely would have gone without the game. I still like finding things and such, but I also have started to tire of the “crap” caches. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still find those caches, but there’s no rush.

I like adventures a lot still. By that I mean the full caching day where we plan out a bunch of great caches and all and then go on a fun road trip and find them. Sometimes it means discovering a few good places to eat, or some trashy places with awful food. It means 20-plus hour days of hanging out and caching. It means miles and miles of entertainment.

But there’s another reality to priorities – I don’t like geocaching alone. To me, it’s just not as fun. Maybe if it’s a hike in the woods or something so I can clear my mind. But most geocaches? Not fun. So people I’ve cached with have moved along, or jobs get in the way (same with me), so the days of caching just aren’t as easy to plan out.

Too, I’ve started doing a lot of different things. I have other hobbies that take up some time. Heck, some of my other hobbies (home brewing) have taken a back seat – and that needs to change, too!

I also like to find better geocaches. I don’t run out for FTFs (I picked up four on Jan. 1, 2014, and then one a month or so ago… so not many in the past two years). I still get excited to move travelers and coins. I get super giddy if I find an actual Pathtag IN a cache and I love meeting fellow geocachers on the trail. Events are what I truly love as it gives you a chance to talk with many different people.

So yeah, priorities have changed – and I think for the better.

But it’s the experiences. I still totally want to do the ET trail in Nevada (where you can score 2,000+ geocaches in like three days), but I want to do it with 2-3 friends with cameras and videos to make sure it’s one heck of an experience.

That’s where my priorities are now – with the adventure and spending time with friends and enjoying all aspects of the game. There are cliques, and groups, and factions, and drama and all that – just like with any other thing in life. I’ve done my best to avoid it in recent years and it’s made the game more fun, which is a bonus.

So get out and find some geocaches. Or do something else. But when you come back to it, take it for what it’s worth and make sure your priorities with the game are fully straight!

Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog@gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!

Read More

Photo Blogging Challenge: July 2015’s theme is …

Jul 01

 

july 2015

Well June was fun!

I laughed at how many of you were talking about going with the old musical Anything Goes! That would have been good, for sure.

The summer is now coming into view fully. And July is with us. So where does that leave us? Well, it leaves me with something I hope can be done anywhere. Now, it might help that there are certain holidays celebrated in Canada and U.S. this month, but hopefully the theme is broad enough that people can work it no matter where they are.

But, I hope everybody enjoyed last month’s free-for-all. For the ones I’ve had the chance to look at so far, it’s been outstanding. I look forward to any others who are adding.

A new month is now here.

The theme is below. But before we get to that … let me remind you of some important items:

  • I set up a Facebook group for those who are interested. Reminders and maybe some discussions or other things can be done there.
  • If you haven’t already, attempt to check out everybody’s posts and consider commenting. These challenges are great for personal growth, but it’s also nice to be interactive with all the others in the challenge! That’s one of the best parts of this challenge — interacting and seeing other people’s work! And remember — I am in the challenge, too. Though I have the linkup, it’s nice to see what people think of those shots, too. I try and re-visit people’s posts a few weeks later, though, and it’s disheartning to see that they’ve only received a few comments. I know it can be hard sometimes, but do your best to actually visit and comment instead of just linking up.

Before we hit up this month’s theme, for new people, allow me to refresh the rules a bit.

Here’s how it will work.

  • On the first of each month (or close to it), I’ll have a blog post here with the theme for the month.
  • Over the course of the month, participants will take photos with their interpretation of the theme. On the last day of the month (or close to it), participants should  publish their blog post, which will include five photos from the month. (please don’t recycle photos from the past … the idea is to hopefully challenge you to go out and take new photos each month to interpret the theme). And please only use photos you took.
  • I’ll have a link-up thing at the end of my post so people can come and post the links to their posts so, hopefully, everybody can go go check out and comment on other posts.

There is no rule on equipment or anything. Use a cell phone. Use film. Use a point-and-shoot. Use a DSLR. It doesn’t matter. Just make sure you publish your blog post on the last day of each month, come here and link up.

It’s simple!

Your blog posts can be as simple or as in-depth as you want. I’ll likely talk a little about each photo. But if all you want to do is post photos, feel free. The idea of this is to give a small challenge and give everybody a chance to express themselves with photography, participate in a challenge and have something to blog about.

That’s it. Easy, right? So join in! Help us continue to grow this challenge by telling fellow bloggers/photographers about the challenge and hopefully it can become a great monthly thing!

For those still with me, this month’s theme is: Patriotic. Canada Day is today. Independence Day in the U.S. is, of course, July 4. But I think this is something everybody can do.

Let’s see what you have for this one! And let’s see if we can get some others interested in joining us! Pass along the word!

Please make sure your blog post publishes Friday, July 31. Then come back here and link up.

If you think you are going to take part in this, drop a comment below so we can see who all might be trying to tackle this challenge!

History of the challenge (past month’s themes – links to see everybody else’s posts are at the end of the linked post):

Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog@gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!

Read More

Photo Blogging Challenge (June 2015): Anything goes

Jun 30

Has the month of June been as crazy for some of you as it has for me?

Work has been hectic (for part of the month), I had a couple of trips to the Doc (had something hanging on a bit too long, so had my normal checkup, then went back for some chest X-rays… things were OK and it seems to be clearing up, slowly), and I’ve been busy on weekends. I had a bunch of images for this month, but after this past weekend, I decided to go in a different direction — graduation.

My niece, Nicole, graduated high school this past weekend. It seems like yesterday that she was a week little tyke and now she’s all grown up, driving, and planning for college.

Crazy.

Anyway, I opted to make that my “topic” for the Anything Goes theme. I look forward to seeing what everybody else came up with for this theme.

So, without further adieu… here are my five!

1. Graduated

The moment where she goes from high school kid to young adult!

Receiving her diploma.

Receiving her diploma.

2. Look what I have!

As her line started to file down, I realized I wasn’t going to get a good shot from my seat. So I moved to be able to actually see and got a few good shots. She also saw me, so she hammed it up a little.

She's obviously happy.

She’s obviously happy.

3. Yahoo!

Think she’s happy?

She's happy, as you can see.

She’s happy, as you can see.

4. The shindig

These were at the graduation party.

What she is.

What she is.

5. Now and future

Cameron always finds a way into these monthly challenges, so far be it from him not to get a snapshot with his cousin the graduate! It’s years in the future for him to get his own cap and gown!

Class of 2015 and Class of 2032ish?

Class of 2015 and Class of 2032ish?

That’s my five and now it’s your turn!

If you took part in this month’s challenge, make sure to link up below. And for those of you who participated, make sure you try and get to other people’s blogs and comment (here, too!). Let’s continue to grow this challenge and have a strong community. Come back and check out the others who link later on, too!

Also, don’t forget to get back here tomorrow, July 1, to see the theme for July!

NOTE: I set up a Facebook group for those who participate in the challenge and are interested. I’ll post any announcements there and hopefully it can be a place where things are discussed and some interaction etc. You can access it here.

Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog@gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!

Read More

Snapshot Saturday: June 27

Jun 27

Another blast from the past!

My niece is graduating high school today. 

Seems like yesterday...

Seems like yesterday…

Enjoy!

Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog [at] gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!

Read More

Day Zero Project: Completed No. 52

Jun 24

A Day Zero Project goal of P.J.’s has been completed!

Goal completed: Buy 101 microbadges on BGG in one day

Date completed: March 2, 2015

microbadges

Number: 52

Description: This is one of those silly … “why?” additions to the list. BGG is Boardgame Geek, one of the top – if not the top – board game website out there. It’s highly in-depth, depending on how deep you want to go with it. But there are microbadges for your profile and I got a tad addicted to them. You can make “Geek Gold” in different ways and spend it on things such as microbadges. A lot of them are very cool.

Why I wanted to do it: As a bit of a microbadge collector, I wanted the badge of getting 100 microbadges in one day. As for the 101? All in the name of the Day Zero Project!

How I did it: This wasn’t random, that’s for sure. I built up some Geek Gold and then ordered some via the marketplace to have enough. During that time, I went through pages and pages of microbadges, making a list of ones I wanted because, despite loving the badges, I didn’t just want random ones. So I build up ones I liked and would want. In the end, I bought the 101 in one day and got the special one as well.

About P.J.’s Day Zero Project: Day Zero is a project where people come up with 101 things to do over 1001 days. I started the project on August 1, 2014 with an anticipated finish date of April 28, 2017. Goals will not be revealed until they are completed. A private list is at the Day Zero website and the list will be made public upon completion of the project. It’s my thoughts that if things are kept private, should I not do them, change or find a way around it, I’d only be cheating myself.

Read More

Hello stranger…

Jun 22

Several years ago, I decided to take on the 100 Strangers Project.

It’s a simple concept – take photos of 100 people you’ve never met before, get permission, and post them to an online gallery.

This seemed like a fantastic project and I wanted to take part. There’s a Flickr group for it, which is nice for support, help, ideas etc.

Here’s the problem – I always tend to forget about the project.

I’ve also tended to be a little different with the way I shoot the project. I’ve noticed many people who do some amazing portraits of the people. I think mine are a little more on the “soft” side, though I tend to also take a wider look at the portrait to try and grab the surroundings.

My first portrait came in February 2010, when I snapped the image of the owner of a new hot dog place in the town where I worked. That eatery didn’t last.

I got to 19 portraits before it kind of fell on the back burner.

That 19th image came in September 2012, on a trip to Ithaca. If interested, you can see the portraits I’ve taken so far by clicking here.

The beauty of this project, though, is that there’s no time limit. It’s not 100 portraits in a year or anything like that. So it’s one I knew, when I started, that would take me a long time. I’ve had many chances to put a massive dent in this project – from geocaching events, to other things – but I just tend to forget about it. I talk to people and after I’ve moved along all I can think is … argh! There was a perfect chance for the 100 Strangers Project!

However, I’ve been looking at some other people’s projects and it’s made my interest grow again. I’m going to try and continue this project moving forward, though I need to do a few things:

Get a few mini cards with the web address to my Flickr album etc., so I can give that to people

Remember to talk to people about this when I meet them

I’d like to add a few people by the end of the summer. It’s going to be a long process because, honestly, I am not going to rush it. I’m going to go at a slow pace and see what happens with it.

Hopefully, this is a push I can use to start carrying my camera a little more and doing more with it. I haven’t even brought it to many baseball games because of carrying it (I seriously need a new camera backpack bag so I can bring it and still have my normal stuff – scorebook etc.), but I’d like to start as there have been some fantastic views at stadiums I’ve been to.

Anyway, feel free to check out my 100 Strangers Project on Flickr and hopefully I can start working on a few other photo things as well.

Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog@gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!

Read More

Snapshot Saturday: June 20

Jun 20

Another blast from the past!

I’ve done a few wedding photos from my parents’ wedding, but had a few still scanned. Here’s one of them. 

Married!

Married!

Enjoy!

Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog [at] gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!

Read More