This blog chronicles my letterboxing adventures. It includes posts that share my travels that are letterboxing related, the letterboxes I have found and planted as well as the people I have met along the way. There are also photos included to help give a complete picture of the fun I had.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

A Day of Letterboxing in Albuquerque

Back in December ArnoldZiffel arranged a dinner meet for the Santa Fe and Albuquerque letterboxers. We all had a great time but we realized we didn't get to visit very much with the way the tables were arranged and the fact we were in a restaurant. Days later Astro D and I talked and we both felt we needed another get together so we could all visit more. So Astro D got to work and in no time she arranged for a get together in Albuquerque. Today seemed to work for everyone and so we scheduled it and ended up meeting in a local coffee shop. But before the meet up I decided to go early and get in some letterboxing.

I haven't had the time to get to Albuquerque in a while to letterbox so I had quite a few boxes to choose from. Last night I got things ready and mapped out all the boxes. I ended up leaving Santa Fe around 9:00am and made my way south to Albuquerque. My first stop was at Sunset Memorial Park to find Grumpy Grinch's Fierce Fisherman. This was a quick and easy find and once I had the box in hand I took it back to the car to stamp in. When I was done I had to wait a few minutes for this one car to leave before I could put it back in place. Once it was hidden I continued on my journey. I drove to Tingley Beach and parked in the far parking lot. I walked from the parking area into the bosque and followed the trail for a short distance to a bird blind. I was on the search for Wronghat's Go N2 Serendipity BoX. It didn't take me long to find it and then I sat near the river to stamp in. Once the box was back in place I walked around the area just enjoying the quiet. I only saw one person during my time in the bosque. After about 30 minutes I decided to return to the car and continue with my day. Back on Tingley Drive I went a little further to a pullout parking area across from where the elephants hang out at the zoo. I was looking for Pachyderms Backdoor by Wronghat. I read the clues and started looking for the box. I wasn't having any luck but I kept looking anywhere I thought the box might be. Unfortunately I didn't find the box and it was time for me to go and meet the group.

So I headed over to Napoli Coffee on Carlisle. I parked and while I was getting my things out of the car I noticed other people showing up. Once in the place we put some tables together and we ordered drinks and snacks. The group consisted of Wronghat, Semicolon, ArnoldZiffel, Agent 86, BirchMoon, Astro D, Speleo and myself. We had a great time visiting and talking about letterboxing. I talked with Wronghat about the Pachyderm box and what I did wrong - he gave me some insight and I decided to try again after our visit. We all talked about different boxes around the state and talked about boxes we have found and we passed around logbooks. It was a great visit and I hope we can do it again sometime soon. After a couple of hours we all headed off in different directions to continue our day.

I returned to the Tingley Drive area to try again to find the Pachyderm box. I reread the clues and this time I realized what I had done wrong (with Wronghat's help) and I easily found the box. I took it back to the car to stamp in and then had to wait a little while because a group of people had stopped to talk right near the hiding spot for the box. Eventually they left and I was able to get the box back in its hiding spot. From here I made my way to Central and then to Old Town. I parked in the parking lot between San Felipe and Romero and went in search of Astro D's Breaking Bad in Burque: Dog House. The box is hidden in the parking lot and I found it fast and then sat on a bench to stamp in. It was such an open area I thought I would have problems with lots of people but I didn't see anyone and I was glad about that. I stamped in and then replaced the box. I was now ready to continue on. When we met at the coffee shop Astro D let us know she had just placed another box. So I got the clues from her and now it was a good time to go and find this box - Breaking Bad in Burque: Los Pollos Hermanos. I got to the location easily enough and parked. I read the clues while sitting in the car and tried to find the location of the box from inside the car. I wanted to find the location while in the car because the box is hidden off of a very busy road and I just wanted to make a bee line to the box and then take it back to the car to stamp in. Everything seemed good and I left the car and headed towards the box and as I went around a tree I encountered a turkey. I jumped and screamed and was thankful there wasn't anyone around to see or hear me. The good thing was that I scared the turkey when I screamed so he ran the other way. That made it easy to get the box and take it back to the car. After stamping in I walked back to replace the box making sure there was no turkey around - he wasn't, and it was easy to get the box back into place. Now I headed to the UNM area and specifically to the Observatory. I drove into the parking area and made my way to the spot where the box was headed. I was a little concerned looking for this box because the parking lot was empty and I was out there in the open where anyone passing could see me. I was a little worried that campus security would pass and ask me what I was doing. Fortunately no one came and I was able to find Star Wars Anniversary and stamp in without incident. After replacing the box I got back in the car and looked at the time. It was already 5:00pm and it was starting to get dark. I decided to look for one more box and then find something to eat for dinner. I drove to Coronado Mall and easily found C4's Mother and Daughter box.  I parked right next to the box which help protect me from being seen while I nabbed it and took it back to the car to stamp in. I quickly stamped in and then replace the box. By this time it was dark and I was hungry.

It just so happened that I could see a Panera Bread not far from the box so I decided that is where I would have dinner. I ended up having black bean soup and thai chicken salad. While I ate I surfed the net on my iPad and just relaxed after a great day of letterboxing. I left Panera around 7:30pm and needed to find something to do until 11:00pm - that is when I needed to pick Thomas up from the airport (he was returning from a trip to New York City for work). Once I was in the car I started thinking where I could go and sit and play on the computer for a while. I remembered that there is a Satellite Coffee on Central not too far from the airport. So that is where I headed. Playing on the computer, drinking coffee and having a little snack helped to pass the time but around 10:15pm I needed to move - I was tired of just sitting. I made my way to the cell phone waiting area at the airport and parked. At first I thought I would just sit in the car and wait for Thomas to call but I was antsy so I ended up walking around the perimeter of the parking area about five times. As I headed back to the car (fyi - I was the only one there) my phone rang. Thomas had landed and was heading for the baggage claim - he said he would call once he had his suitcase. I waited about 10 minutes and then decided to head toward the pick up area. Thomas called just as I was making the last turn. We got his things in the car and we were on our way home.

It was a great day in Albuquerque and I found some wonderful boxes. Also Thomas is home after five days away - a wonderful way to end a fantastic day.
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