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Posts posted by chiqui74

  1. Thought this was a good place to post this.


    A Different Christmas Poem


    The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,

    I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.

    My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,

    My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.

    Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,

    Transforming the yard to a winter delight.

    The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,

    Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.

    My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,'

    Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.

    In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,

    So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.


    The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,

    But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.

    Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know,

    Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.

    My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,

    And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

    Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,

    A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.


    A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,

    Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.

    Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,

    Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.

    "What are you doing?" I asked without fear,

    "Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!

    Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,

    You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"


    For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,

    Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts..

    To the window that danced with a warm fire's light

    Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right,

    I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night."

    "It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,

    That separates you from the darkest of times.

    No one had to ask or beg or implore me,

    I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.

    My Gramps died at 'Pearl on a day in December,"

    Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers."

    My dad stood his watch in the jungles of 'Nam',

    And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

    I've not seen my own son in more than a while,

    But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile.


    Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,

    The red, white, and blue... an American flag.

    I can live through the cold and the being alone,

    Away from my family, my house and my home.

    I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,

    I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.

    I can carry the weight of killing another,

    lay down my life with my sister and brother..

    Who stand at the front against any and all,

    To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."


    "So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,

    Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."

    "But isn't there something I can do, at the least,

    "Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?

    It seems all too little for all that you've done,

    For being away from your wife and your son."

    Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,

    "Just tell us you love us, and never forget.

    To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,

    To stand your own watch, no matter how long.

    For when we come home, either standing or dead,

    To know you remember we fought and we bled.

    Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,

    That we mattered to you as you mattered to us."


    LCDR Jeff Giles, SC, USN



    Well, I am bawling like a baby here. That is a beautiful poem.



  2. US Navy Hospital Corpsman for 5 years, from 2001-2006. Deployed to the Gulf for Enduring Freedom, which turned into Iraqui Freedom. I was honorably discharged in February after completing my enlistment. I don't think this makes me better than anyone else but it has me, personally, a better person. I experienced things, good and bad, that I wouldn't have otherwise and has shaped who I am today and how I live my life. Would I do it again? Don't know but I certainly don't wish I could take it back.



  3. Does anyone how (if indeed possible) I can create routes using Google Earth? I don't want to type a departure and destination point, I want to create a custom route by clicking on the map. If not Google Earth, is there any other free software out there that will let me do this? TIA



  4. I have been only one geocaching (alone btw) but I have hiked alone and I had a bad experience. I was attempting a day hike up to Mount Vesuvio in Italy. It was a cold but clear day with nice, white fluffy clouds. I was following a route marked on a map, which was all fine and dandy at first. I passed a few people but then I was by myself. At one point, I realized I was lost and and way off track and started retracing my steps (I didn't have a GPS then). On the way back, I started to get some altitude sickness. I felt very dizzy and weak. I just had to sit down for a while. That, however, didn't make much of a difference. I started throwing up and of course, freaking out even more. I had some water but I didn't plan well enough and I didn't have any food with me. I also had several pounds worth of photographing equipment on me which made it even more difficult for me to carry on walking. My cell phone did not have a signal either so I couldn't call anyone. All the way back to the car, I really thought I wasn't gonna make it. I could hardly stand up straight. To make matters worse, I made the stupid mistake of not telling anyone where I was going. It was a terrifying experience. Live and learn. I didn't hike, alone or otherwise, for one and half years after that.


    That could have happened to anyone. However, I think that women have another kind of danger to worry about. As a girl, alone in the woods, you are an easy target. People won't bat an eyelash if they see a man hiking alone or walking around in the woods alone but, in my experience, women attract much more (unwanted) attention.



  5. I guess the main problem I was having was that my GPS was saying I was at a set of coordinates that were roughly the cache's yet it was saying the cache was 200ft away, then 28ft, then back to the hundreds. I didn't know whether to believe the coordinates or the other information.



  6. I went geocaching today for the first time. I had some trouble with the reception in the woods and for a few different reasons, I had to abort and come home. My GPS receiver was giving me readings all over the place and the accuracy was never better than 25 feet. So, how can peple be sure the coordinates given by the person who hid the cache are the right ones for the location? Is it not possible that their GPS wasn't very accurate and we have the wrong coordinates? Just curious.



  7. Yes, it did come with a computer cable, a serial cable but my PC doesn't have a serial port. Silly question maybe, if I just enter the waypoint, will it still take me to the right place? I'm anxious to get out there and play but I don't wanna be lost in the middle of nowhere or digging for cache in the wrong place.



  8. Hello.


    This is my first post so bear with me :) I have just been given a used eTrex Vista. I have looked everywhere to see where I'm supposed to enter the coordinates I'm supposed to navigate to but I just can't find such a place. I assumed that to find a cache you had to enter the coordinates on your GPS receiver. Am I missing something? Any help will be greatly appreciated :P



  9. Once again, I'm new so bear with me. Even though I had decided to get the Meridian Platinum, i thought it was a good idea to a little research on the software. I noticed there's a lot of coverage of North America but very till of Europe and Asia. WHy is this? Am I looking in the wrong place? I'd like a software for hiking in Europe since that's where I live now. The only Magellan software I found for Europe was the MapSend Stree or City or something like that. Is that all there is? If so, I'm a little disappointed.



  10. Hi.

    I'm brand new here, this is my first post. Anyway, I'm looking into buying a GPS unit and I have a few questions. I've decided on the Magellan Meridian Color...

    1. Is it safe to assume that Garmin software wont work in Magellan units?

    2. I know you can find where you are through the GPS unit, now, can others find YOU? For example, in case you go hiking and go missing, is it possible for the rescue teams or whoever to pin point YOUR location provided you have your unit on?

    3. The Median Color is WAAS enabled but I'm not sure about the European equivalent anyone know? I'm an american living in Italy and I'm getting the American version, but it would be nice to have the European equivalent of WAAS as well.


    Thanks all I can think of for now. Anything else you wanna add? Thanks in advance for your help.




    Edit: One more question, I'm pretty sure coordinates don't include altitude so, how do you figure out the altitude when given a set of coordinates?

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