10. Aug, 2022

SideTracked Day

It’s SideTracked Day, well actually it’s ST Week but I‘m a bit pedantic so I have to find a ST today or attend a ST event. STs that I haven’t found around here are non-existent so where better to go than Croydon with its Tram network and all the train stations around there.

So it was the usual plan, park on the street near Birkbeck Tram station and hop on a tram into town. I got off at George Street and tried to find the ST here but I couldn’t.🙁 I walked down to the Minster and ticked off another base of the Croydon Gems AdLab series. I also found the CM trad and a multi of the Drinking Fountains series.

I walked south picking up a couple of CMs, the St Andrew’s trad and the South Croydon - United multi. I spent sometime at CM SC - St Peter’s. I found all the information, double checked it, did the maths many times and still ended up with a negative value for the last digit of the westings - I couldn't see what I was doing wrong 🥴

I headed back into town via a small independent coffee shop that I had spotted earlier. After a cake and coffee deal.😀 I got to the Town Hall and quickly worked out the WM - Croydon Cenotaph multi and collected the first base of the International Women's Day AdLab series. Just around the corner was the information point for the George Street TRAM and realised that I'd messed up the sums last time. I still couldn't find the cache in the new place but at least I stand a chance in the future.

I went down to East Croydon station and jumped a tram down onto the Addington line. I was after the King Henry's Drive ST trad which had been MIA the last time I was here. There were no problems here this time so I caught the return tram back to Addington Village. I already had the ST but I was after the VHs mystery nearby. This one was soon found and I started to walk across the park towards Coombe Lane station. I paused at the Yew've Goat To Be Kidding tree climb. A ladder was supposed to be essential but I reckoned that without a bit of arthritis in my right hand I could have climbed it.

In the corner of the park was the Park by the Palace trad. It hadn’t been found for quite a while but I eventually found it. I was now close to Coombe Lane Station so I added the ST trad here to the list and then walked north into the Shirley Hills towards the Viewpoint virtual. I must have taken every wrong path but I eventually reached the vista where a family was having a picnic. I did the necessary to claim the cache and left them to their sandwiches.😀

I found a much quicker route back to Coombe Lane and got back on the tram. I worked my way up to Beddington Lane Station picking up seven STs on the way. I had solved the nearby Buried at first sight mystery before so I wanted to find it.

As soon as I saw it, I knew that it was the Baudot Code, a teleprinter code used to send messages over a communication channel such as a telegraph line or a radio circuit. When I started work nearly sixty years ago this stuff was part and parcel of my trade. I worked on incoming and outgoing and I could have read this on sight. However the memory dims and I had to decode it this time. At the final stage I would have stood no chance without the explicit instructions.😀

Once I got back to the tram station, it was time to head south back into town. It had been a hot day so I stopped off at South Croydon for coffee and cake. Once I’d cooled down a bit, I was back on’t tram to get back to the car. I stopped off at Arena and Harrington Road for two mystery ST caches that I had managed to solve during the week. With these two collected, I headed to the end of the line, Elmers End and walked back to the car. It had been a very profitable ST Day.

1 Virtual 2 AdLab 3 Multi 4 Mystery 12 Traditional