[last day's report: who's placing bets?]
- What a rollercoaster. So tired, but thought I�d try and type up what I
remember. Today was up and down the whole way, so I�m going to submit this
report separate from the scores in case anyone wants to follow along.
I woke up in Maine, where I left you last. Headed down I-95. The last few
days contained a lot more zeros than I anticipated and allowed for, so my
wildcard of the one point out on Cape Cod did me no good. I have to admit it
was very tempting to just drive the extra hour and be home, but apparently I
have a bit of gung ho in me.
So I headed to the only trio of dashpoints I knew (or at least thought I
knew) were scorable: down in the Binghamton area.
If you�ve followed along, you know that this portion of the trip�the last
week or so�has been full of folly. I can�t complain too much because my
drives to Chicago and back and then down to Philadelphia and back went so
smoothly, but over the last few days I�ve had both bad luck and made bad
judgements�not a good combination.
So today would start no differently. In fact, it started about this time
last night when I realized that I didn�t have the maps nor the dashpoints
programmed into my GPSr, and the internet at the motel I was at was down. So
this morning I dug out my phone cord and did it via dial-up and got on my
The last two days I drove a bit over 500 miles; the two before that I drove
a bit under 500. Today I drove 503 miles just to get to the first point. It
definitely reflects the uniqueness of the opportunity to catch one of the
great geodashing records (in my opinion; Jack�s would be the other, but I
have a hunch that one�s safe, at least from me, ha).
They should have all been easy drive-bys. Stress �should have.� My initial
plan was to hit the furthest point�CUGY�and come back. However, as plans
tend to inspire, the unplanned happened: somewhere on I-88 between Albany
and Binghamton my aforementioned damaged muffler had enough�the exhaust pipe
broke and dropped. I didn�t need to pull over to know I was dragging it
So I found a Meineke in Binghamton. I�ve driven over seven-thousand miles
this month, so I was also due for an oil change. And, since I wasn�t
planning on this day of the trip, I was also wearing my last pair of clean
boxers. This part is where misfortune works out.
Down the street was a Laundromat, and Meineke was backed up an hour. So I
headed down there while they worked on my car. I got my oil change and some
clean undergarments, but the exhaust pipe wasn�t in stock, but they at least
tied it up for me so it�s not dragging.
After this delay, I decided to reverse my planned order and get the nearest
first. This ended up being the first decision that really worked out for me
this leg of the trip.
What also worked out for me was the fact that I left my clean laundry at the
Meineke: they called me up, I returned to get it, cursing the time I lost.
But then, after I left their lot the second time, my oil light came on, so I
returned a third time. Turns out they used the wrong oil filter. My engine
would have been a goner if I wasn�t right there when that happened.
Curiously, one of the employees kept revving my engine to listen to the loud
un-mufflered exhaust system, marveling at how cool it sounded. (Later,
driving through Towanda, a kid would throw up signs, presumably thinking I
had an exhaust modifier and was someone he knew.)
Anyway, I finally set out, night already for CUYZ, following Route 17 West
along the Susquehanna River, which I would see a lot of. This took me into
Pennsylvania, and most of the roads were packed dirt, or plain dirt and/or
gravel. This was just off of Howie Rd. in Wyalusing, which offered a view
over the valley. Nearby was a house that was light with contrasting trim; it
was dark, but I�d have to guess gray with red trim.
CUGY is where it all went wrong.
More roads similar to CUYZ, but where MapQuest showed an easy drive-by, in
reality the road ended at a wide muddy lane with a sign to the effect of
�Enter at Your Own Risk� (pardon me for not making notes, but the next hour
or so was a bit frantic). The road was bad, and after the previous few days,
I should have known I�d used up all of my luck on such roads. When I saw a
sign that said �KEEP OUT,� I figured that was all the cue I needed, and
slowed down to find a spot to turn around�only to get stuck.
I got myself unstuck briefly, but very briefly.
So I looked at my GPSr. I wasn�t in scoring range, and it was after nine at
night, and I had no service to call AAA, without even knowing if they�d pull
me out of there or not anyway. It was over. I wasn�t going to score the
point. I had to accept defeat.
So I marched up the hill to the house at the end of the road proper and rang
the doorbell. The fellow, who had a gorgeous young female boxer, said he
couldn�t help me, but let me use his phone and suggested that I call the
farmer down the road, who apparently owned the land, which I did.
His wife answered and wasn�t very pleased. In fact, she said that she
thought it was ridiculous that I was on that road. Perhaps she was right.
She put her husband on the phone, who wasn�t very impressed, either, but
offered to help pull me out after grumbling about just getting ready for
I stood out there waiting for some while. Initially a nuisance, I thank him
for taking so long: to kill the time, I looked up how far away I was from
the point. 500 feet. I waited longer. Then I thought: I could probably run
down to my car and an extra couple-hundred feet and score the point while I
And so I did, returning to my car at just the same time he did. We chatted
for a bit, he handed me a chain to secure my car with, then drove up the
hill to turn around and back down. He pulled me out with surprising ease, I
thanked him, asked for his address to send him further thanks, we shook
hands, he left, and I, refreshed, routed to CUGY.
Problem: my GPSr said I�d arrive at 11:52. That was a bit close. I�d never
dashed on the last day of the month before, so had never dashed against the
clock�and for this one to be worth so much. So off I went.
I should also note here that when I loaded the maps for the region I lost my
voice commands for turning. It�s not that big of a deal, normally, but it is
something you grow used to, and when I blew a turn and my ETA jumped to
12:01, it�s value was underlined.
As soon as I saw that it was having me make a loop, I made a u-turn and got
it down to 11:56.
After driving by Mansfield University (closer to CUSO than CUGY, but I
always find it interesting when I drive by places I�ve heard of but never
really knew where they were) and back into New York to Canisteo, which had a
welcoming sign saying �Site of World Famous �Living Sign�� (which I didn�t
see and will have to Google later), a short drive down Main Street scored it
at 11:53pm. Talk about down to the wire.
I�m exhilarated and exhausted, obviously, but I also feel oddly guilty for
taking the honor from BOB!!�and by so little�but hey. As Anna put it when I
called her to tell her, �I�d be a bit disappointed if you didn�t after all
the money you�ve spent.� And with that, it�s back to reality.
Thanks for everyone�s encouragement. This would have been a bit easier and
much smoother if I set out to do it from the start, but it only popped into
my head after the top ten got posted and there was some friendly support of
the cause. I certainly owe some of you a nod, so thanks.
- On 4/1/05 at 3:20 AM, dmmism@... (David Michael McNamara) wrote:
> What a rollercoaster. So tired..."I left my laundry at the muffler shop" is a good song title. You did it! At just shy of 2 hunts per day for 28 days (you started 3/4), I'll bet you're tired! Give Anna a big hug, rest up, read the mail, and go for a long *walk*. At least you don't have to do the laundry.
Now, about forming a one-man team to beat out my 5-man team in March... we'll get even! If you have trouble sleeping, just count llamas. ;)
geodasher | llama league
> From: David Michael McNamara [mailto:dmmism@...]I apologize to Anna and your vehicle for posting the top 10 monthly scores
> Thanks for everyone's encouragement. This would have been a bit easier and
> much smoother if I set out to do it from the start, but it only popped
> my head after the top ten got posted and there was some friendly support
> the cause. I certainly owe some of you a nod, so thanks.
:o Thanks for the reports; I enjoyed reading them.
Here are the top ten again, with you at the top:
Points Hunts Game Player
131 55 45 McMeanderer
129 49 6 BOB
88 33 22 Dashing Dog Mac
88 33 22 Madam Dash
87 31 35 Douq Millar
83 31 23 Jack Frickey
80 30 28 YLO_RLR
75 25 14 Gordon Livingston
72 26 9 riverdash
71 25 39 Jack Frickey
- Well done David.
A fantastic effort.
I noticed I was going to be kicked off the top 10 table half way through the
month. I suppose I might now have to get my backside in gear and get back on
Unfortunately by the time I've got anywhere near the score needed to get
into the top 10 I've run out of dashpoints without crossing any of the seas.
Congratulations on hitting the top of the table. I'm sure BOB!! won't mind
>On 4/1/05 at 3:20 AM, dmmism@... (David Michael McNamara) wrote:No apologies needed. Maybe if I fell short.... And about Anna, that's the
> > What a rollercoaster. So tired...
>"I left my laundry at the muffler shop" is a good song title. You did it!
>At just shy of 2 hunts per day for 28 days (you started 3/4), I'll bet
>you're tired! Give Anna a big hug, rest up, read the mail, and go for a
>long *walk*. At least you don't have to do the laundry.
>Now, about forming a one-man team to beat out my 5-man team in March...
>we'll get even! If you have trouble sleeping, just count llamas. ;)
>geodasher | llama league
thing: she's leaving for DC today for her sister's bachelorette party, so I
won't see her for a few days, but at least I got to go to Philly and
Portland with her, and I probably need the next couple days to hibernate
(although tonight three friends are staying at my place in Boston; I need to
try and get back before them, ha).
As for beating llama league, I think you were due a defeat. Ha. It'll likely
be my only one, so you're not going to get me to apologize for this one.