As I mentioned in my last post, we arrived at the campground much later than we had planned. After setting up our tent, we did manage to meet a few other geocachers attending the Mega and most of them were quite impressed with the fact that I had a) come all the way from Canada, and b) driven up from London.
On Saturday, we staggered out of bed and headed to the mega event location in Perth. It was in a large community centre that normally has a curling rink and indoor lawn bowling green in it. We checked in and picked up our swag and roamed around the venue checking things out.
The travel bug table was covered in weird and wonderful travel bugs and there were dozens of people madly writing down the TB numbers. Getting between them and the table was a bit like getting between a pack of hungry dogs and a rabbit – a serious undertaking.
We also checked out the various vendors who were selling everything from containers to geocoins and everything in between.
At some point we grabbed breakfast before heading out to pick up our kilts from the kilt store (more on this in a bit).
We returned to the venue and explored the goings on a bit more before heading out to do a little caching in Perth.
The first cache we did was called “The BIGGEST Curler in Perth” and consisted of two giant curling brooms and a topiary curling stone. We arrived to find several geocachers already on-site (hardly surprising given that there were hundreds of geocachers at the event), so finding the container wasn’t a huge challenge. After signing the log, we headed off to the next closest cache with a couple of geocachers from Germany.
We did a few more caches together before we came to the edge of the river where we found a number of other puzzled geocachers. The coordinates for the cache we were seeking took us to the middle of the road, where it was obviously not. But someone looked over the railing and noticed that there was a large storm sewer outlet in the side of the embankment. After some hemming and hawing, we decided to throw caution to the wind and take the plunge (so to speak).
After wading along the shore to the mouth of the sewer (actually, a drain as it carried the flow of a small river and not sewage), we entered it and I clambered over a giant pipe that was very likely carrying sewage to get past it. Finding the actual cache was pretty straight-forward after this.
We carried on to do a couple of more caches before heading back to the campsite to get ready for the Ceilidh (prn: kay-lee) later in the evening.
After figuring out the non-trivial logistics of putting on kilts in a tent, we presented ourselves to one of our Scottish campsite neighbours for review by an experienced kilt-wearer.
The result was this:
It’s at about this point that I would like to say to my skirt-wearing female friends: Ok, I get it and you have my respect.
For those interested, I’m wearing Baird tartan and my friend Rob is wearing Duncan tartan.
We packed ourselves into the car and headed off to the Ceilidh. Upon arrival, we made our way inside and found a table to sit at with some of our neighbours from the campsite.
The Haggis was piped in and an ode to the haggis was performed with a suitable geocaching theme added and dinner was served.
There were a number of options for dinner, including haggis. Most of the people at our table, including us, had the haggis. I’d never had haggis before, so I really didn’t know what to expect. It turned out to be quite tasty with peppery spices. Later on I bumped into someone who told us that it was a particularly good haggis, so that made for a great first haggis experience.
We headed out from the Ceilidh and bumped into some other cachers, including one or two also in kilts, who were heading out to do a nearby cache. Though we had done it earlier in the day, we accompanied the group and were pleasantly surprised when one of the other kilt-wearers pulled out a flask and passed it around to celebrate the finding of the cache. That’s a tradition I can appreciate!
With that we called it a night and returned to the campsite.
Oh, and what was in my sporran? I had my Ceilidh ticket, some money, my camera and my BlackBerry.