Sunday, August 5, 2012

My Birthday Treasure Hunt

At exactly 9am I received GPS coordinates by SMS.
Quickly punching them into my Garmin I saw straight away that it was going to be one of the local fast food outlets. (They're all very close together) It turned out to be the golden arches and my clue was a womans first name.
First things first, seeing as it was early I ordered breakfast and coffee and sat to consider my clue. There was no one in the *restaurant that looked familiar and no one was looking at me so I went to the counter and asked for the womans name. * just who decided these fast food shops somehow deserve the title of restaurant?
I was pointed to the manager who knew who I was and gave me a small present containing another set of coordinates and lots of numbers on bits of paper. 

As she sits now, 3 Km from the water, you cant see it but you can walk right under the Corvette HMAS Whyalla

The new co-ords took me to our new city library.. I sat in my car looking at the numbers, two sets on two bits of paper. They looked somehow familiar.. then the penny dropped. I was outside the library and the numbers were Dewey numbers. The two sets of numbers took me to two books. Australia's Sea War and Greece and Cyprus during WW2. There were no bits of paper or marked pages in the books so I guessed the books themselves were the clue.
We have two WW2 sites here in town, a large Gun Battery which protected our harbor and ship building facilities and the first war ship built here now dragged from the sea and set up as a museum several kilometers from the sea…not a small ship.
I did a drive by of the ship, had a look about and not finding any clues moved on to the gun battery. 
The old gun battery is set on a hill overlooking the sea, as such it was perfect to set up as a picnic area with one restored ships gun and all the original emplacements still intact. With a few huge picnic tables with benches and a lookout viewing 360deg all around.
I wandered about the emplacements first and eventually made my way over to the big gun.
I like this place, during WW2 my father worked in the steel making facility and manned the big guns here on the hill.
Eventually I found a bright yellow rubber duck hidden in the recoil chamber of the big gun, on it were more co-ords.
Punching them into the Garmin it immediately came up with a map showing the point, I knew it immediately, my daughters house on the same street as mine…
The whole family was there, I was carried inside by a wave of grandkids, through the house and outside to the patio where they were all gathered with food, presents and cake. It was a great day and in fact the best birthday since my 21st.



Twisted Scottish Bastard said...

What a lovely idea for a Birthday.

I must admit getting a bit aprehensive when you mentioned the duck in the recoil chamber.
I thought things were going to get a little steamy.

Congratualtions, your family did you proud.

Hope the hangover won't be too bad.

MOCK! said...

Wow!!! That is a great story! I love the hunt and the joy of the ending! You are a lucky man!

Belle said...

That is a fun way to start a birthday. I'm glad you had such a wonderful day!

Symdaddy said...

Having all the family there waiting for you was, in a way, the best treasure you could have found!

Tempo said...

Hi TSB, Theyre smart girls and constantly surprising me with their trickery. They each have 4 kids under 9 and with everything else they still made time to set this up. We dont drink around the kids, we want them to have a good lifestyle, no booze, no hangover.
Hi Mock!, exactly right, I am a very lucky man. I did enjoy the hunt but most of all I felt honored that they went to so much trouble to set it up for me.
Hi Belle, I had a great day, first with the kids then because the Winter weather was unseasonably warm I got to take the Yamaha out for a ride in the afternoon.
Hi Symdaddy, I couldn't agree more mate, no matter what, being with family and friends is worth more to me than everything else.

River said...

A treasure hunt! That's a fabulous way to get to your party! It sounds like you had a wonderful day.
Happy Birthday.

Argentum Vulgaris said...

A great story, things like that make me teary eyed. I will comment, that I have never shied from drinking with kids around; I was brought up in a teetotal home, I was never 'taught' to drink, and when it was available, I was well on the road to being an 18 year old alcoholic. My rescue is another story, I should post about that. My kids have never seen me drunk as I tried to give them the message that alcohol can be enjoyed responsibly.


Tempo said...

Hi River, It sure was a good day, partly because of the hunt but most of all because they went to so much trouble for their old man.
Hi AV, It's a sad story but kind of happy to, in a weird twisted way. Dont get me wrong here, none of us are teetotal but we dont believe in making excuses to get to drinking. The drinking generally comes after the kids bed times or when they have sleep overs etc

Argentum Vulgaris said...

Certainly wasn't suggesting that you might be teetotal. As for making excuses, no, we just let the kids see that we were open about it, and that it could be done in moderation. I have requested a father to leave a BBQ because he got drunk, because it wasn't the message I wanted my kids to see. His kids were emotionally abused by his alcoholism, he had seven, four of which spent more time at our place than home. The youngest is the same age as my Emmylee, six, and they're as thick a thieves. He's not around any more, Mum got sick of it and chucked him out, so the family is getting along okay. But I do see your point. I had a healthily stocked bar at home and the kids could see that it often stayed untouched for weeks, that drinking wasn't necessary all the time.