I haven't flown for six weeks and I was really hoping to at least be able to get some stick time this weekend. The forecast looked reasonable but not great, certainly not real soaring weather but I was optimistic.
Saturday, being the first saturday of the month, was demo day so I wouldn't be able to fly anyway. The weather was bright and sunny but I was a slacker and stayed inside most of the day. I was slow getting started, and ended up dropping by the office that afternoon to see what cowquat was up to (and to catch up on stuff I didn't get done earlier in the week). Later a bunch of us had a great sushi dinner at Ichiban (it was only my second time to try sushi, I had some salmon and salmon roe).
Sunday I got up early enough to go flying, made lunch, checked the recorded field report (marginal conditions, should be okay I thought), headed up to the field, and nobody was there. Usually when soaring is cancelled the field report is updated to say so, but not today. So I continued on for a nice drive through the hill country, taking 210 to 963 to Burnet, then 281 through Marble Falls, then 71 to 620 to Mansfield Dam where I ate my lunch. I hadn't brought my GPS (I had left it in the other car), so I couldn't look for any geocaches on the way, and found later that I had driven right by several.
I came back home and warmed up with some hot chocolate by the fireplace.
Round Rock Robber's Grave, Bigger Than Life Cache, and The Round Rock). I learned that in the bed of Brushy Creek, there are hundred-year-old ruts carved into the stone by passing wagons! (The picture links to a couple of photos.)
While wandering around the Brushy Creek bed, I stopped to talk to a nice Mexican-American woman named Yolanda. She was there with her daughter and granddaughter collecting bamboo that would be used in a traditional dance. The bamboo is cut into sections about three feet long, then bound together in groups of about five in such a way that when it is thrown by a dancer who holds on to one end, the contraption extends to its full length. It would also have ribbons tied along its length. She said she hadn't made any of these props for 15 years, but came back to the same place as she found the bamboo last time.
We talked for a while about how much the city has grown, and how Austin has crept northward to almost merge with Round Rock. She said when she was growing up in Round Rock, there was never a thought that Austin would reach all the way up here. She also remarked about how the water in Brushy Creek used to be clear, so that you could easily see the bottom, but now it is muddy and has foamy bubbles indicating some kind of pollution. Such is the price of progress, I guess.
I just logged my three geocache finds and nearly doubled the number of caches I've found. Even though I found my first cache over two years ago, I'm still new at this!