Geocaching in London

London, Ontario that is. I recently got my Garmin GPSMAP 60C back from being repaired and I didn’t realize how much I missed the little toy. So lately, it’s been getting a lot of use geocaching in Winnipeg and now in London.

I’m out here on a little business trip and it was a nice evening and I had a Travel Bug to drop off, so I was off in search of GCMF2MT – Greatest Treasure of All Time which was the closest cache to my hotel. This morning before I left Winnipeg I downloaded map detail for the London to Toronto corridor, but for some reason the GPS doesn’t have any map info for the city, just major highways. However, with the waypoint for the cache loaded, I just started walking cross country to try and locate the cache. For this one, it worked out well an I was able to find the cache without too much trouble. The next one would be a little different.

The next closest cache was GCNV25T – River Stroll Series – Foxway. The description put it on a walkway along side a river, just off the path. After walking several blocks, I come across a river, the Thames no less, and proceed down the river bank on the side closest to me as I approached the river. The GPS is indicating about 750m down the river. I go down a street for half a block and then there is an access path to the river bank where I find a nice mowed path right on the edge of the river. This must be the trail. As I get closer to the destination the heading starts to swing to the south and point across the river. You guessed it, I’m on the wrong side of the river! There is no bridge close by, so it’s back the way I came and up the other side. This time the path is a nicely marked, asphalted trail and after a 1.5km “opps” I’m able to find the cache. Well, that’s enough for one night and I take the trail back all the way downtown and back to the hotel.

One of the great things about geocaching is that it takes you places you might not normally go. While this is only my second time in London, I’ve seen a lot of the area that I might not noramlly have seen. Who knew that London has a “forks” area similar to Winnipeg’s “forks“.

Tempus Fugit

(tem’pus fyOO’jit), [Latin]: Time Flies

I re-titled my blog today based on reading an article in Photolife magazine which was given to Scott as a birthday present. It seems much better that “Random Thoughts” and especially applicable at this time in my life where time really does seem to fly by. Seasons come and go at an ever increasing speed. I’ve heard it said that people of my age feel this way because there is a smaller and smaller percentage of life to live ahead of me. I can still remember growing up and spending summers at the lake, where summers seemed endless at least until that last week before school started. Now summers fly by in what seems like a few short weekends.

Speaking of time flying, Shirley and I had the privilege of celebrating a birthday with our good friend Chris last night. We had coffee and a great chocolate cake that Shirley made and just enjoyed each others company. Right now both of our families are preparing for summer weddings. Us with Eric & Dez and Chris and Elaine with their daughter Jennifer. With children leaving home it seems to even more emphasis the passage of time and the move to a different phase in our lives. Some of these changes are exciting and children leaving home is a natural process but I know I’ll miss the daily contact, the playful jabs, and the good natured banter. I hope there will still be bike riding episodes to be enjoyed.

From the deck.

From the deck.
Originally uploaded by Big Dadoo.

The cottage is such a wonderful place. The view from the deck is always refreshing and new no matter how many times I sit and look out over the water. Even a rainy May long weekend has it’s sunny moments. This weekend there were a lot of bugs, a huge number of bug in the bush and around the water front. We were out in the boat one afternoon and going by another island where it appeared there were columns of smoke rising up from one end. Upon closer inspection, it was millions of these bugs in a swarming formation. But, no mater what the conditions, or what our personal circumstances are we can always make the choice to enjoy our surroundings and to enjoy life. Being happy is a decission that I can make every day, and I choose to live a great life, full of joy and happiness. Life to the max!

Dark Waters

Dark Waters
Originally uploaded by Big Dadoo.

Opened the cottage on the May 15-16 weekend and while the weather was not the greatest, it was wonderful to be back at the cottage. It’s always so peaceful and relaxing. There is always time to just sit and thing, to refresh the soul, to get back in touch with Who and what is important.

Arrived Friday night and after unloading put on the fireplace and Shirley prepared a nice snack. Turned in fairly early to get an early start on firing up the water system. Up on Saturday but not sure exactly when an I begin the familiar ritual of reassembling the water system which was carefully shut down last winter. First all the in-cottage connections, then under cottage connections and then the water line from the pump to the house. It’s amazing how many little quirks, work arounds etc. develop in the system over the years.

All is going well, the line is in, the pump is primed and pressure is building in the system. OK, here we go, opening the valve to the line up to the cottage. Hey, what’s this spray of water all over the place! After closing the valve I realize that that little slow drip I noticed last year really did mean something. This little part in the system has seen a better day. Inspite of having a huge inventory of plumbing parts, I don’t have this one, so it’s off to Kenora. Once in the car I notice it’s only 8:15am and I must have been working for over an hour. On the way back from Kenora I treat my self at Timmy’s to a coffee (no donut, I’m on the program 🙁 ).

Once the pump is running it’s time to open the valve that lets the water into the cottage. This is where thing can get exciting. Everything seems OK for a few minutes, but then there is that sound of running water and all the taps are closed and things should be quiet. Yikes, it’s the “pipe patch” in the lower bathroom ceiling, it’s spring a leak. Run out side and shut the valve, fix the pipe, clean up the water all over the floor and try again. Success! The rest of the day is spent doing odd jobs and getting things back in place, plus a nap. Can’t work too hard. Another great day at the lake.

Wrong Side

Nobody usually likes to be on the wrong side. I didn’t want to be on the wrong side of the digital divide so after reviewing the list I realized I wasn’t doing too bad. But, I’d never spent the time to look at Technorati or boingboing . In fact I’m still not all that sure what boingboing is all about. And, I’m not yet bored with flickr. I still think it’s very cool, especially for free!

Park Bench

Park Bench
Originally uploaded by Big Dadoo.

Things are getting interesting now! I just set up a flickr account to make blogging with a photo a little easier. I guess I’ll need to take a few more pictures to see how this will all turn out.

Phil, Shackleton, Churchill and The Ride

Today, Phil Baker spoke at our church, and delivered a great message about Words. Small words and Big Words and the importance of having Big Words in our life like Joy, God & People. Phil Baker is the pastor of Riverview Church in Australia. Their web site seems to be under a major re-vamp so perhaps you should check back later. They’ve also been reviewed by ABC

Phil mentioned his blog so I checked it out for a bit this afternoon before taking a bike ride. My son Scott purchased a couple of Phil’s CDs on building business leadership, Shackleton – a leadership legacy, and Winston Churchill – a study in greatness. Shirley bought a book, which I’ll get to later.

So, before the ride I burned Phil’s CDs onto a CD-RW disc in MP3 format and loaded up Scott’s Guru Flight road bike into the van and headed of for a road ride. I went out Henderson and I was thinking about a spin out to Lockport and back, a popular road ride. Just before setting out I noticed that the temperature was dropping. It was about 10C and at the last minute I decided to throw on the jacket over to of two jerseys. Good choice! There was a very strong headwind from the north and it was cool. After slugging out the headwind for 15km, I wimped out and new that Lockport was just too far away for today’s ride and turned around. The wind noise on the first 15km was so loud that it made it quite hard to hear the CD, hence I’m re-listening to it now. Good Stuff! It’s quite interesting since I recently saw the IMAX production about Shackleton. It’s quite a remarkable story.

The 15km back was uneventful and much easier riding. Going out was about 28km/h and coming back was 35+km/h. I’m a little zapped after yesterday’s 32km ride and the Bowflex workouts, so It will be an early night tonight.

[Listening to: Track 04 – Phil Baker – Shackleton (2:54)]

7th time lucky?

Whether it’s luck or skill Lance certainly has a lot on the line as he prepares to go for the 7th straight win in the Tour de France. With announcing his retirement after this years Tour, he’s planning on going out at the top of his game. I’ll certainly be pulling for him to win as it would be an incredible achievement. Six wins are already incredible, but I think a loss on number seven would cause most people only to remember the loss and not the fantastic record that’s already achieved. We tend to have such short memories and a focus for the negative. No matter what happens it will be one exciting Tour