Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Bug collections

I'm probably going out caching again tomorrow. As I was looking over some of the possible cache locations that I wanted to hit tomorrow, I noted another travel bug hotel in the local area that I haven't gotten around to checking out yet. I looked at the cache page tonight because it's a puzzle cache, so I needed to figure that part out, but won't be going there tomorrow because it's been muggled. Apparently it can be repaired, but it looks like four travel bugs and a couple of geocoins are in the great beyond.

As noted in the last log, I went out caching last Saturday as well. I picked up quite a few travel bugs and coins on this run. I also deposited five coins and bugs that I've had. And yes, I kept my promise, taking a photo of each one before they were placed in caches. Admittedly, some of the pictures were pretty lame and uninspired, but I like the round gear on top of the round tire. Can you figure out where the cache is? I also like the car perched on the overpass of the freeway. I'll get better as I keep remembering to take the pictures.

The day started out nice and hot. I believe it was over 85 by the time Chaosmanor and I met up in the San Fernando Valley at 8 o'clock in the morning. We drove up the I-5 toward Gorman where we started our caching run. I think we found 12 caches in and around Gorman, dropping some bugs and picking up some bugs as well. In the cache where I dropped the little car, we hadn't really looked at the cache page that closely and I thought we were looking for a guardrail type of hide until I spotted a larger container about five feet away from the guardrail, hidden in plain site. Doh.

The bonus came when we opened it up and out dropped Allison. Yep, Allison, a white jeep! I haven't seen a white jeep in ages, so I was thrilled. I actually had to go back to the car, pick up the travel bug, take a picture of the travel bug before making the trade for Allison. Allison has spent most of her time up in Washington state, but has made it to Utah and now is in Southern California. I'm probably going to take her to Oregon later this summer.

Later in the day, Chaosmanor found a rubber ducky travel bug, FrankenDuck that he was going to keep. I have a travel bug in my possession right now that's similar to it, so I was semi-coveting that duck. Hey, webbed feet should go together right? Anyway, we found another really bizaare travel bug a little bit later in the afternoon that was named after Chaosmanor's wife, so he gave me the duck and took that one. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with FrankenDuck, but it'll be gruesome.

I also found a Diabetes travel bug on Saturday, plus a geocoin. The diabetes travel bug was as surprise as well. I guess I need to read the cache pages more in depth, because it was listed on there so it really shouldn't have been a surprise, but it was. Go figure. That one is going to be a little bit tougher to photograph than the others. I've actually found that travel bugs, due to there larger size tend to be easier to photograph with respect to the background than do geocoins. I don't think the Belgium coin photographed in my hand next to a Joshua Tree is very inspiring at all, but I wanted to show the owner the different kind of plants that are native to California and that's what was at the cache site, so I went for it.

The Bug in a Ball travel bug ended up getting left in a nice cache under a 90 year old Coulter Pine tree. Coulter pines produce some of the largest pine cones and some of the heaviest pine cones in the world. Trust me when I say you do not want to get hit by one of these. There were these huge cones everywhere littering the ground near where the cache was and Chaosmanor even commented about needing a hard hat before going in for this cache. I looked up and saw several cones in the tree, but none that looked threatening. We're both out safe, so I guess that means we escaped unscathed.

Of all the pictures that I took on Saturday of travel bugs, the one that brought back memories was of the wine cork that I hung on a barbed wire fence near a pond up by Gorman. Back in 1991, the area in and around Gorman, CA was host to a temporary art exhibit by Christo. This was his umbrella project. Back in the 70s, he'd constructed a nylon 24 mile long fence in Northern California. I'd been in college at the time, but didn't take the time to go up and view Christo's Running fence and to this day I lament that decision. For whatever reason, Christo's art speaks to me. So when I heard about the Umbrella Project, I knew I had to go up and see it. I got up one Saturday at 4 in the morning and drove the two hours all the way over the Grapevine down into the central valley of California and then slowly worked my way back up and over taking pictures here and there of the umbrellas.

The pond was one of the locations where four of the umbrellas were placed in the water, so there were some really cool reflections. These were the only ones there were in water in California. In Japan, at the same time, the other half of the Umbrella Project was happening, only with blue umbrellas. Many of these umbrellas were placed in water over there. I can recall once I got home stating emphatically to my wife that I wanted to go to Japan to see the other umbrellas. Sadly, the day I was up there viewing the umbrellas, a storm blew through, lifting one of the umbrellas up and then bringing it back down on a woman viewer killing her. Christo closed the project down immediately. He has since done other temporary works of art similar to this including gates in Central Park in New York City.

I doubt that me making the attempt of photographing every travel bug that goes through my hands played a part in that particular photo because I remembered the pond and was telling Chaosmanor about it before we got to that particular cache. But it helped me make the decision to take a picture of that bug there. I'm having fun doing this and I hope the people who own the bugs are enjoying the work. I already have an inspired photo ready to be taken the next time my tortoises show their heads in the backyard. It's not going to involve a certain white jeep, but then again......

Pictures were taken at or near the following caches:
Tejon Pass - by Castlebrook
ERIC (Turning 48 by the 58) - by TheFisherman & TickBait
Joshua Parkland - by Team Perks
Just Ducky - by Searching Gentiles
Gorman Road - Pond - by fOtOmOm

Profile for Webfoot

No comments: