Today, since I had most of the day to myself, I decided to make it an adventure day. After dropping the kids off at Camp Nana, I headed out to explore the surrounding area. What better way to do that than to letterbox? What, what? What is letterboxing you say? It is a global treasure hunt that takes you to off beat places that you might never have heard of or ever wanted to go, that is until someone placed a letterbox there! You follow clues to find a hidden custom carved stamp. That’s right, a hand carved rubber stamp, a little piece of artwork for you to find and stamp in a notebook. Why? For fun of course! “What’s the point of being a grown up if you can’t act childish sometimes?” -Doctor Who. Besides, it’s fun, it’s free and it gets us outside and spending time together. But today, it was just me. 🙂 (Go to Atlas Quest to learn more about letterboxing!)
I started in Hillsboro. There was only one box reported to be active there. The others had vanished. But this one was still alive and kickin’! And look at these crepe myrtles. That is what makes Texas pretty in the summer. I never would have known this beauty was here if it wasn’t for letterboxing. I walked around the grounds some. The museum is only open on Saturdays, if you would like to stop by when you are in the area sometime. If you do end up stopping by, beware of the guard dog.
Then my adventure turned west down TX 22, to Meridian State Park. I love hiking and state park, so why not stop here and find the couple of letterboxes that are hidden there and get a hike in too? So I did. There was a purple diamond hiding in there. Those are special boxes that are loved by many of its finders, so many, that it is deemed a box of the week. I have not found one yet, so I was excited at the opportunity. After following the clues, there was no box. I looked under every stone, but did not find it. Oh well. I did find the other box on the same trail though. So I am now 2 for 3. Not a bad day so far.
While I was in the park, and had no little complainers, I decided to take a hike around the lake. It was a 2.5 mile hike and it was just what this soul needed. I was almost the only person in the park. For most of the hike I was alone. I did see a few people fishing, but that was about it. It was hot, but not uncomfortably. The smell of cedar and juniper filled the air. Many different birds sang their sweet melodies, insects buzzed in the trees, and the rustling of the leaves in the gentle breeze made this hike worth a little heat. There were also many monarch butterflies fluttering about. My daughter would have loved it. It was so nice to be alone and enjoy myself. I am thinking I need to do this more often. Perhaps once a month? Sounds good.
After finishing my hike, I proceed to the next town with a letterbox. This one was located just outside Hamilton, Texas and it was placed to commemorate “Billy the Kid”. Apparently he did not die in New Mexico, but rather lived out his day out here in good ol’ Texas. There are even museums with “evidence” that this was truly THE notorious outlaw. This was an easy enough box to find. I did find it rather interesting the types of “presents” left on the memorial. And “next door” to Billy, was an interesting marker, for Briggs. It had a piano on it, but no dates. Maybe they were on the back and I just missed them. I did clean off a WWII vet’s marker. The grass is starting to grow over the end of the marker and dirt was covering part of his name. It kind of makes me upset to see that.
There was another box here in the cemetery, but it was vanished as well. It hadn’t been logged as found for about 2 years though. 3 for 4 now.
So onward with my adventure day. Up north to Stephenville I went. There was a box there, but had been reported to be missing for quite some time and by quite a few people. I took their word for it that it was gone, and ate dinner instead. After a tasty meal, I headed back to the road. I passed some interesting buildings, so I quickly turned in. The grounds had a bunch of the areas older buildings, moved here for everyone to enjoy and remember days gone by. There was a neat little gingerbread house and an old church. There was also a strange statue of the big bad wolf. I might just have to carve that character and place a box out there. It’s worth a see! (I’ll leave the picture out so you can go find the park and the letterbox when I plant it, sound good?)
Now that I had made plans to come back and place a box, I moved on to the next and final stop on my adventure. The Texas Hill Country Furniture and Mercantile, Home to the worlds LARGEST ROCKING CHAIR. Truly it is. They had a sign stating the Guinness book of world records deemed it so. It was made from Cedar and was very tall! I walked all over and did not find that letterbox. There were grasshoppers though. So many, it was very hard to walk around without getting jumped on. I opted out of going in the store, mainly because I was getting tired and thirsty and was ready to go home, and partly because the box was missing. 3 for 6 today, still isn’t bad, but was hoping for one in each town I visited. Oh well. We’ll just have to plant some new ones in the future. 🙂
Thank you for coming along on my adventure day. I hope there are more in the near future. I wonder where the road will take me next time?