Thursday, September 27, 2007
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
the one to the left is a rather dark image of the hole in the bottom of my backpack...you might be able to make out two smaller holes also, one on either side....
and the one on the right is, of course, the can of Off spray with the blue sticky substance in view at the top and bottom of the can.
I don't know if the poor quality of these pictures is the result of an inferior camera or the inadequate skills of the user...but I'm blaming it on the camera. :)
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
I'd like to get your opinions about what it might be...
My first clue was a blue sticky substance on my fingers as I got near the bottom of the main portion of my backpack. I then noticed this substance on some of the contents I had just pulled out. Oddly, it wouldn't come off when I tried to wash my hands...it just spread out as it was smeared around. I went back to the backpack and continued to empty it, and one of the last items to surface was my can of Off bug repellent. That's when I noticed the second clue...a sickly smell accompanying the stickiness on the can. My assumption was that the can of Off had leaked, although that didn't explain the blue color.
As I tried to clean the stickiness off my backpack with baby wipes (unscented, of course), I discovered it wouldn't come off, just as it hadn't come off my fingers. I got a sponge and a bottle of Soft Scrub and started scrubbing, and that's when I noticed the third clue...there appears to be a hole in the top layer of material in the bottom of my backpack, about 2 inches in diameter.
My theory is that the Off leaked out of the can and ate a hole through the blue backpack material, which created the sticky blue substance I encountered. If my theory is correct, the potency of this chemical boggles the mind!
I'm curious to know what you all think about this.
Friday, September 21, 2007
The box title is "Just What The Doctor Ordered."
Larry of the 5-B's.
For those of you that have already gotten your rum, the stamp has been updated and version 2.0 is aged much better.
L of the 5-B's
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
The party will be held at our house. I do not want to post directions here and need a head count. Please email me at McMonkeyMom@gmail.com for directions. I REALLY want to see you all there. We have a HUGE backyard and plenty of room for everyone. If you have ideas or prizes to share let me know.
Monday, September 17, 2007
There was plenty of good food and great stories to go around. Over 20 temporary boxes were planted just for the event so there was plenty of finding and stamping to go around. There were so many boxes even I did not have time to find them all. And for those of you who think urban boxing not comparable to a walk in the woods, do I have a story for you for we had quite an exciting time on one hunt in particular.
McMonkey Mom and I were hunting a single box hidden right at one corner of the park. We were looking over one of Lnd-Crzr's wonderful picture renditions trying to determine exactly where the arrow was pointing when I notices a truck turning the corner shooting what appeared to be flames out from under it. Now being used to the city, I expected the car to be souped up with some special flame shooting exhaust so I nudged McMonkey Mom with my elbow so she could take a look. As the truck cornered and came closer, it became apparent to our horror that this car was not rigged to produce these flames but was rather spewing gas directly from the engine and leaving behind a fiery trail in its wake.
As you can imagine, we were both somewhat taken aback at first, but after a second I was able to yell "HEY MAN, YOU CAR IS ON FIRE!" (A definite first, and hopefully last for any gatherings). Luckily they heard me and pulled over very quickly and ran from the car. They looked dressed to the nines (perhaps for one of the many weddings being held in the gorgeous park). The fire department was quickly called in and dispatched the flames soon enough, but Lnd-Crzr who didn't see it all unfold quickly came rushing down to make sure that everyone had made it out of the car safely, a true sign of his selfless commitment and rescue training. Just another reason, we are lucky to have him in our midst. As the fire was being put we were even able to use the distraction to obtain the box of choice. (Afterall remember the LB credo, neither snow, nor rain , nor gloom of night, nor flaming vehicles shall keep a boxer from their targeted letterbox.)
All in all it was a good time. I had to leave early but I hear the gang hit the Crown Center area and had even more good food and fun including dinner by train.
For all of you who contributed boxes, thanks so much for making this event a success. I have returned with them all, so please contact me to arrange a drop off. We had so many contributions (including an 11 box series that Lnd-Crzr just had lying around his house) that a few of the larger boxes did not even get hidden due to the nature of the park. Thanks again to everyone who helped out and I hope to see some of you next week in St. Louis. Hopefully there will be nothing on fire this weekend.
My camera batteries were dead so I didn't get any pictures, but if anyone would like to post a link to theirs that would be great.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
I am looking for assistance with two aspects of the program:
One, I would like to borrow carving tools for that day (they will be returned to you). Since letterboxing is first and foremost an art, the girls will be carving simple home-made stamps as part of the program.
Two, pending approval from the Girl Scout leaders, I need several volunteers willing to go with a small group of girls when we split up to do hunting, so that they have an experienced letterboxer with them. If you are not already a park volunteer, you wouldneed to fill out some paperwork in order to volunteer.
Our general agenda for the day is to introduce letterboxing and explain whatit is, why people do it and how it has evolved. We will go over etiquette include the art of stealth and discretion, proper re-hiedeation, how to sign a logbook and contact the placer, what hitchhikers are and whatto do with them, how to solve clues and how to use a compass. We will then split into five or so groups and look for temporary boxes planted in Rock Bridge State Park. Our goal is to fulfill come of the requirements on the High-Tech Hide-and-Seek Special Interest Badge. If interested in loaning tools or helping with the event, please contact me at difoxfire (at) hotmail (dot) com. I will be doingthis program again in March for upper elementary aged Girl Scouts.
Friday, September 14, 2007
Thursday, September 13, 2007
We’ll try to meet at the picnic table next to the large stone fireplace at the north end of the park near the playground. There is parking on the semi-circle drive and there is parking along West 51st Street near the playground. As these picnic tables are non-moveable and are available on a first come first serve basis, I ask that everyone who can, bring tables and chairs. The more the better as some of us driving in from out of town might not have the space to haul such furniture.
Liz has included driving direction, so if you need them, please let me know.
Also she has included this suggestion for additional fun. For those coming in with kids and plan to stay through dinner, there is a great place at Crown Center called Fritz’s. A train delivers your greasy cheeseburger to your table. It is a fun place for kids! There also is a Crayola Café there at Crown Center. I believe Ethan and I will be heading over to Fritz’s for a root beer when the festivities are over. Anyone and everyone are invited to join us!
I’ll attempt to get there early and snag the table for us. Look for the pirate flag, but if it’s not there yet, don’t worry. Just go ahead and grab a table. You’ll know a fellow Letterboxer by their conspicuously full backpack.
Looks like we’ll have beautiful weather!
Please feel free and e-mail any questions.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
After 24 hours of driving with a three year old, we arrived in Maine on August 19 with most of our sanity intact. We were immediately welcomed by beautiful cool weather, friendly neighbors, no internet connection and no cell phone reception. We’ve since gotten connected to the web, but finding a cell phone that picks up a signal inside our house is an ongoing saga. However, there has been plenty to do to take our minds off the phone calls and messages we’ve been missing….I’ve finished the unpacking but am still trying to find a place for everything in the house, and the garage is overflowing with the overflow. We’re having a garage sale later this month….road trip, anyone? You’ll be just in time for a New England Fall….some of the trees are already starting to be tinged with color. I could make a special letterbox for the event….anyone?
We haven’t been out to letterbox yet, but we did manage to find a box on our roadtrip here….Goat Island, hidden at Niagara Falls. It was fun searching in the midst of such a huge tourist attraction, and we were impressed that the box was still in place. However, those of you who have had the dubious pleasure of letterboxing with us will understand the horror I felt at discovering my camera battery was dead as I was trying to take pictures of our quest. No record for posterity! If you have no pictures, does it still count as a find??
I’m looking forward to sharing our letterboxing adventures with you all when we start having them…in the meantime, I’d love to hear a report from the Tolkien contest/gathering. Pictures would be even better!
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
With that in mind, we are assuming that the event probably won't go off as she had originally planned in her blog and she just has not had time to update any information or cancel the event on AQ. But without hearing anything there still is some chance that she may have everything set up.
There are 22 people who have signed up and after some discussion with many of them we have decided to set a backup event plan in motion just in case. Lnd-Crzr will be creating a seperate event sign-up and will be contacting everyone who signed up for the original. I don't think Perdu had anything reserved at Loose Park but I am looking into this and will update attendees on Thursday or Friday.
If you do plan to attend, please let me or Lnd-Czrz know. I am not sure if Perdu will have a chance to release the clues to the boxes she had planted for this event, so we are looking for boxes to take and plant either temporarily or permanently. Even if you are not attending, if you have a box that we could use and return to you after the event, please let me know and I will make arrangements to pick them up.
Please check back here on Friday night as we should know more then. Thanks for your help.
Thursday, September 06, 2007
Dear Clyde -
We have met a couple of times through my husband, Charles Davis.
I believe you are involved in "letterboxing" and I need some help. I am looking for someone (on short notice!!!) who could tell my daughter's girl scout troop a bit about this hobby. The short notice: the meeting is Sept. 12 from 3:45 - 5:00!
We are hoping to find someone who could also guide them through making their own stamps. Our plan is to make stamps & decorate journals at the first meeting. At the following meeting we will go hunt a couple of boxes located near our meeting place. (We meet at Grant Elementary School next to the Columbia Public Library.)
Can you put me in touch with anyone who might be willing to do this?
I teach a class at exactly that time, I’m afraid. Let me see who else might be available, but I’m afraid most of them work at that time. I will post a note on our Web site, http://midmoletterboxing.blogspot.com/, which also has a good set of informational articles on the right-hand side.
Do you have stamp carving material? Most carvers use the gray or pink stuff sold at craft stores but you can also cut out stamp shapes from thin craft foam and glue them to a block. I suggest that you carve only the personal stamps the girls will use to identify themselves. We recommend that you wait until you have found four or five boxes (on separate outings) before you try hiding one yourself. Finders all have a trail name or a name that they share with their family or group. I use C2B2 with my wife, Cecile, because we share the initials “CB.” We like groups to stamp onto a single page of the box logbook so it doesn’t quickly use up the paper. I saw a Girl Scout troop stamp in near Kansas City in a neat way — their combined stamps formed a picture on the page. I have seen families that do that, also.
The major challenge of letterboxing with Girl Scouts or any group is the stealth aspect. The prime rule of letterboxing is to not let “muggles” see what you are doing or to find a trail to the box. So a group cannot troop to the same box without being obvious. Worse is when someone shouts with excitement at finding the box. However, the hobby can also be both a great lesson and a fun activity for young people. Many of our boxes are focused on history and ask you to ponder the surroundings. Others have mathematical codes that require real problem solving. And many, many of the local stamps are pure art. It is the art of the stamp carver that makes letterboxers so nervous about having unappreciative people look for boxes.
There are many boxes in Columbia, including several in the downtown area, as you will find at http://letterboxing.org. But I would suggest a weekend outing to look for the “FB” series of about a 20 boxes That is the Favorite Book series of boxes planted by Lnd-Crzr. He and his son found their favorite young-people’s boxes and created clues that relate to the stories in the books. Ron is an incredible artist with a carving knife and so his stamps are worth finding. The fun here might be to have the girls pick their favorite books from his list. The easy way to find the whole list is to go to Letterboxing.org and the search for boxes page. Enter Missouri and Boone and then (in the clue name slot) “FB”. It will give you the full list.
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
We will be meeting at Castlewood Park in Ballwin, MO on Saturday Sept 22nd at 10Am. You will be looking for the picnic area right after the horse/biking areas (look for balloons) on the left. There are bathrooms nearby, a playground, and the river. At the end of the street is a beach where you can float, sit or swim in the Meramac river, so if you want to cool off after hiking, bring your swimsuit, chairs and floaties.
There are four classes scheduled (piano hinged logbooks, regular logbooks, intro to letterboxing, and a cypher/code class). Through out the day you can participate in our match up the invention with the inventor game and the first one with all the matches correct will win the trophy basket. There will be several other prizes given so come prepared to play hard, have fun and meet new people. There are also 4 KIDS ONLY boxes with prizes for the kids that find them as well. Clues to all boxes will be made available at the event.
This is a potluck so bring your favorite food item to share. (along with your plates, silverwear, and drinks) The hotdog bun is associated with the Worlds Fair held in St. Louis so it is only fitting that BBQ hotdogs will be served. We’ll eat around 11:30/12:00.
We hope to see you there!
(If you would like to donate towards the prize basket, please contact me at TheBHunters@atlsquest.net. Also if you had planned on carving a box for the event, I need them to reach me by Sept 16th so they can be planted in time for the games.)
Directions: From I-44 westbound, head north on 141. Turn left on Big Bend and then LEft again on Ries Road. When it dead ends at Keifer Creek, turn left into park and drive until you see the picnic area on your left, tucked into trees by the river. There is parking across the street or in the next lot up.
From Columbia, head east on 40/64 then South on 141. (You'll go quite a ways on 141) Turn Right on Big Bend then Left at Ries Road. Turn left into the park on Keifer Creek and drive until you see the picnic area on your left. Look for the balloons and a white pop up pavillion. Park across the street or in the next lot.