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Featured Cacher for January 2008 - AggieJWP

AggieJWP of Missouri City, TX.
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How did you learn about caching?
AggieJWP: Before I moved to Houston in July to teach, I was in school at Texas A&M Corpus Christi. In my last moth of college, my church friend Jon (MuJonny) told me he wanted to take me out geocaching. I figured it had something to do with hidden money. After realizing the difference between cashing and caching I went out and did a cache run with Jon and was hooked. I felt like I had been open to this hidden world of treasure hunting that involved technology. I was in Heaven!
What kind of equipment used (PDA, Garmin, Magellan, software)?
AggieJWP: Funny story there, I didn't know if I was going to be able to stay in geocaching for a while with an impending move to Houston from Corpus Christi. I couldn't rationalize with Mrs. AggieJWP letting me spend 300 dollars on a GPSr so I had to find a sensible alternative to going out and purchasing a big receiver. I searched the Geocaching.com forums and found a guy who was selling his old Garmin Etrex Legend that had been ""gently"" used. It took about a week to negotiate it down too 90 dollars. I sent a money order to the guy who lived in Florida and about a week later received the unit.<P>About three weeks ago, I was able to go paperless by buying a Sprint Palm Centro. I can log the cache on site, check the hints right where I am, and don't have to carry my geocaching notebook of print out pdf's. It's definitely made it easier and has lowered my DNF's.

What are your all-time favorite cache/s and or adventure whilecaching?
AggieJWP: My favorites have too be the series caches that we have here in the Houston area. I love the ""Pump it Up"" series but also like the caches placed by Snoogan's at Buffalo Run Park. I didn't realize how big of a park I had so close to my house.<P>I also just got back from Walt Disney World this past week after vacationing there during the holidays. I realized quickly that the virtuals located at each specific park were not going to be cheap virtuals to get. I ended up paying 280 dollars for the four day pass to go to each of the parks.

Do you have any other hobbies?
AggieJWP: Hobbies? No. Commitments? Yes. I'm a elementary school 4th grade teacher by day, so I give my time to my school. I am definitely working ""off the clock"" for them in most cases. I maintain their website, assistant coach their basketball team, chair the Science Fair, and coach the upcoming spelling bee. On top of my commitments, I have to teach the students their regular class work.

Have any "Most embarrassing Geo-moment" you would like to share? Details please!
AggieJWP: I was hiding a cache near this abandoned commercial market center off of Hwy 90 near the beltway. I had placed the cache and went on my way. After coming out of the structure I see a police car but knew I wasn't doing anything wrong, I turned out to get on Hwy. 90 when about 30 seconds later these sirens come blaring at me from behind. I turn into the nearest parking lot and get out my insurance and drivers license. He asked me what I was doing there and I replied "" I was hiding…"" He stopped me right there and said ""You are hiding?"" I told him what geocaching was and he had informed me that about two weeks ago a dead body was there and they were still trying to gather any info or evidence. He told me it was best not to hide it there, which I removed it (2 months later). I still remember his voice changing when he interrupted me to say ""You were hiding?"" He got all fidgety and was going to grab his gun and walkie talkie on his shoulder.

How did you decide on your caching name?
AggieJWP: When I went on my initial caching trip with my friend I had to write a geocaching name to put on the log book, I wanted to make something that hadn't been taken so I wouldn't have to come back and re sign the logs. I thought of my time at A&M when I was a student their and then put my initials. I was relieved to find out when I got home and logged my caches that the caching name hadn't been taken.

What is your favorite type of cache (traditional, multi, puzzle) and why?
AggieJWP: I'm a traditional cache type of guy, mainly because I'm so new. I don't have that special ""Viking's"" ability to decipher puzzles, so I go for the caches that generally don't take a lot of thought. I'm sure once I get all the traditional caches within a 10-15 mile radius taken care of, I'll go back and do the puzzles. They are starting to peak my interest, but I still have so many traditional caches out there to find. I'm all about the numbers right now.

Do you currently have any caching goals that you are working towards?
AggieJWP: I do have a goal of catching up to my friend Jon. When I started caching he had about 120 caches on me, I have gotten that down to about 60 caches or so and hope to grab the pastors series and the ""Eat my Dust"" series this summer to over take him. It's a friendly competion. I'm just lucky that I have a plethora of caches in the area, he's kind of locked by the fact that he's tapped out most of Corpus Christi.

Thanks for this interview. Is there anything you would like to add?
AggieJWP: I would love to thank some of the local geocachers in the area: Team Tulip, GrangerFam, Muddy Buddies, and Snoogans. I've met some of yall at the Flash Mob event, but yall have all have been kind in making me feel at home here.