Thursday, January 12, 2012

All Cached Out

I have no sense of direction. It's a fact. From a very early age, I knew that I was different than most people. Maybe it is that I don't pay attention to detail, maybe it is that my head is in the clouds, maybe I just never thought it was very important. One of my favorite tv shows is Amazing Race. I want to go on that show. Badly. However, I know that my team would be the first to get booted off, because I. HAVE. NO. SENSE. OF. DIRECTION.

As a child, I visited my grandparents house often. They lived in our town and our visits were plenty. At the age of 15, I received my learners permit and over the valley and through the woods to Grandmother's house did I go. Well, sort of. You took the main road from our house to their house with a few odd streets thrown in and there ya go. I panicked. I doubted myself. I wasn't sure how to get there. I was a wreck! 29 years later, I've had plenty of similar experiences and I typically give myself extra time in order to get to where I need to go - maybe an hour extra to reach a location only 20 minutes away. I just KNOW I'll need it. Even when prepared, I won't pay attention to the details, and end up 3/4 of the way to my destination before I realize I've forgotten the last page of my mapquest printout. Aw...c'mon, man! What were you thinking? You've done this like a dozen times now. Won't you ever learn?????????

Over the last few years, this poor sense of direction, or of following directions, or lack of attention has poured over into my athletic endeavors as well. Each early morning group bike ride begins with me waking up and knowing that I'm a back of the packer. I dutifully tape my bike route to my aerobars with every intention of being able to follow the directions, but know deep in my soul that I have no chance. I MUST keep up with someone, anyone, in order to not get horribly lost. Admittedly this has been great for my biking skills and I would now consider myself a middle of the packer simply because I've HAD to keep up. No option.

As some of you will recall, I am one of the Sisters Of Pain team that is participating at the Wild Canyon Games this June. A big portion of that first day is geocaching, here explained by Wiki: Geocaches vary in size, difficulty, and location. Simple caches are often called "drive-bys," "park 'n grabs" (PNGs), or "cache and dash." Geocaches may also be complex, involving lengthy searches or significant travel.

Lengthy searches or significant travel? Sounds like me trying to get to the grocery store!! That's right up my ally. HAhahahahaha.

So...I decided to take a stab at it with the kids in tow. Our first cache that we chose was supposed to be 1/2 mile from our house. We set out at dusk in brutally cold weather the other day expecting to be back warm and cozy to our house within minutes. 1 Hour!!!! and 3 miles later, we eventually gave up the search and headed home. You can see my children were thrilled to be out there...

Actually. it was a great adventure, but WAY too cold. We were all almost in tears by the time we got home - no gloves, no hats, and me in a workout skirt. We arrived home in the dark and with our little geocaching hearts a little cracked.

The next day, we set out again on a new search for a new cache...and EUREKA!!!

I'm assuming this is the simplest cache that we will ever find, but we DID IT!! Unfortunately, we were basically just following a compass on my phone and coordinates did not play a factor in our search.
I am hoping.
I am praying.
I am begging my Sisters of Pain.
Please...Please...Please do not make me do this leg of the race.
Pretty please.
I will get lost in the desert and die.
Just sayin'.


Big Daddy Diesel said...

I am the same way, I get lost alot. So what if we dont pay attention to the details, we are focused on the big picture

Shellyrm ~ just a country runner said...

My husband calls me geographically challenged.

Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel said...

This is why I steer clear of the compass during adventure races :)

Anonymous said...

I go by the fact that all geniuses were kind of absent minded and had their heads in the clouds. It might be the only thing I can challenge you with, but I bet I am more directionally challenged than you. My sister still tells the story of me looking for my car... in the wrong parking lot!!

misszippy said...

So funny! I will keep my fingers crossed for you.

I used to be terrible w/ directions, but have improved as I've gotten older. Why, I have no idea!

Nelly said...

That geocaching game sounds interesting! But I too am bad with directions, I definitely would not do very well at that game, haha Congrats on finding that one though!

Oh, and not sure if I congratulated you on winning your NFL pickem pool, the guys are awesome. I've used their picks to finish 3rd for 2 years in a row in my college football pool, getting $80 each year. I almost finished first, but a couple games didn't go my way (Georgia and Stanford)

Coy Martinez said...

Do NOT feel alone friend. I too am directionally challenged. Even with a GPS I can get lost as hell. No joke. I went to a race in Missouri and they had closed the road over the Ohio, it had me a wreck trying to figure it out. Sigh. I, like you, have the same panic thing on the bike. I ride harder to keep up. Big time :)

Mike said...

Sorry you are directionally challenged. My wife isn't challenged like that but she has been known to miss a turn on the highway and end up a couple hours down the road the wrong way :-).