Catching Up With Travel Bugs
I really enjoy receiving updates on my trackables. For some time, I was buying travel bugs from geocaching.com quite frequently and sending them off on their way. During GeoWoodstock IX (GW9), we released about 6 travel bugs and a couple of them have put on thousands of miles since the 2nd of July.
One of the things I like to do when sending out a travel bug is to create a custom tag that is attached to the rider. With the ability to engrave on either a plastic, weatherproof tag, or anodized aluminum, I provide instructions and a link back to this blog. I am always fascinated at where these little buggers end up. With all my trackables, I request that a photo be taken of either where the bug was found or placed so I can visit where they end up … or a photo of the cacher with the trackable. I can’t decide which I enjoy more as both have been fun to view.
From GW9 in Pennsylvania on July 2, 2011 here are a couple updates on my travel bugs…
Howl at the Moon – 4,225.6 miles
From Pennsylvania to West Virgnia and then a huge jump to Northern Scotland, Howl at the Moon then made its way to Southern Scotland at the Edinburgh Castle. The geocacher who recently picked up the bug took a photo of a dog statue with my travel bug on its head (photos below).
A quick Google search told me about the statue and its location. This statue is of a three legged dog called “Bum”. It is located at the King’s Stables Road entrance to Princes Street Gardens and was gifted to the Town from San Diego which is one of Edinburgh’s Twin Cities.
My Bushy Brown Beaver – 6,363.6 miles
The beaver was traded at GW9 in July 2011 and has been the long distance traveler from my trackables so far. From Pennsylvania to Florida and then a flight to Germany, this beaver has seen more action than Vegas showgirl.
While in Germany, My Bushy Brown Beaver had visited some interesting sites including the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Hamburg Dungeon, cranes in the port of Hamburg and even the Queen Mary II which is docked in the harbor. Amazing places this beaver has been, and I have been an armchair traveler visiting right along.
Another fun part of the travel bugs visiting foreign countries is translating the comments made by fellow geocachers. I’m pretty sure those in Germany didn’t get the suggestive name I gave this travel bug, as a comment was made which read, “Da haben wir doch nun endlich einen Biber aus USA. Also Mr. Beaver, auf gehts…”. Translated, they said, “Because we’ve got now finally a beaver from the USA. Mr. Beaver So, let’s go …”
I feel this geocacher summed up everything nicely with his parting comments… “Wir haben meinem Neffen Geocaching gezeigt und nun ist er genauso verrückt danach wie wir es sind. Kartoffelbrei war sein erster Cache. Wir wünschen brown beaver alles gute für die Zukunft, ciao Matilas2007”. “We have shown Geocaching to my nephew and now he is just as crazy as we are. Mashed Potatoes was his first cache. We wish you Beaver Brown all the best for the future, ciao Matilas2007”
Geocaching is an addictive and thoroughly enjoyable activity. I’ve tried to explain it to others – some seem interested, some dismiss it as a waste of time. If you don’t have a sense of wonder, enjoy traveling or the thrill of the hunt, then I suppose it would be considered a waste of time. But for me, it is an incredibly fun activity that I enjoy with my family. I enjoy visiting places I never would have known existed and trying to get inside the head of someone I’ve never met … to experience their thoughts on cleverly hiding something.
I’ll keep on sending out travel bugs and geocoins. I’ve lost many of them along the way through various means. Some have been stolen, or in one case, a flood took one away. What a story I’ll have to tell if that one ever shows up again. It can be frustrating to lose a trackable, but for such a small investment, I have the opportunity to travel the world from my computer at home.