NEW VIEWS: THANKS FOR THE CACHE

With everything that’s going on nationally and in the world at the moment, you have to celebrate every pleasure where you can at the moment, no matter how small it may seem.

Geocaching is one of my favourite things to do in my free time these days because it combines exercise with nature, and I like the challenge of trying to find things. It’s a hobby that many haven’t heard of, but with 35 million players all over the world, it’s actually hugely popular. ‘Caches’ are hidden pretty much all over the place, most often in points of interest, and people of all ages like to search for them whilst exploring the world.

With International Geocaching Day having taken place this month, I’ve been trying to get into the spirit of it by getting out and doing it as much as possible to make the most of the light Summer evenings. One of my favourite things about it is that the GPS map of the geocaches gives you reasons to take turns you’ve never taken before, explore new places, and find out new things about your surroundings. Geocaching has guided me to disused Underground stations, memorials for historic events I’d never heard of before, and seemingly random spots that offer some of the most stunning of views. All places I may well not have ventured if not for the game.

It was during one such occasion recently that a turn I probably wouldn’t have taken otherwise afforded me this beautiful panorama of golden fields and gorgeous horses:

It was a scene of pure peace against the external noise of current affairs, and during those moments of taking in the scenery around me, I felt I had discovered something very special and secret.

And these kind of moments make me wonder more generally, about what else is out there waiting to be found? What other beautiful views? What other contented creatures? Maybe sometimes we underestimate the potential for these things to be much closer than we think. Maybe it’s not always about going further, but simply going different. Not overlooking that plain old alleyway to our right, but wandering up it anyway and just seeing what’s on the other side.

Some years ago, I used to think that to see something really new and breathtaking you had to travel very far, but you don’t. You’ve never had to.

Not if you’re willing to look.

Song of the Day: Teenage Fanclub – Speed of Light

Classic Scottish indie. I borrowed this album from the library in 1999 and it doesn’t seem any less new now than it did then. Does this mean I’m officially old?

Actually, not sure I want to know the answer to that…

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