Today was our final practice event. If we haven’t got it by now we’re not going to get better during the world champs next week !
It was a longer full 80m event, set by Gyrui and Daniel. Daniel had to head off at the Start since he was taking a train journey to a major orienteering event to the North on Sunday. Good Luck Daniel !! I ran the Start and hence headed off last.
Gyrui had set an interesting course where you had to run in and out of a couple of the controls. He did this, he said, to prove what a poor thing this is since competitors see other competitors coming out as they are heading in. Well it happened for me so I guess he proved his point.
I really only made one mistake in the event making a pretty poor navigational choice at one point that took me way way down a valley and up again (pant pant). Probably cost me 10 minutes or so. I took 92 minutes, and for comparison Adam took 82. Others were longer, despite the fact most only had to find 4 transmitters.
It’s interesting the poor choice I made was one Gyrui had not expected anyone to do (it was meant to be his “in and out” illustration), but both myself and quiet Bob individually decided to do it the long way.
This afternoon one car headed back to Pecs to do some shopping, and the remainder (we only had 1 car available) had a look at a nearby water-wheel mill, still operational. In fact, the building was original, but the 120 year old equipment came from other old mills in the area since the original equipment had been cleared out during socialisation (1950s). The mill was brought back into full operation only in 1994. Lots of amazing wooden tubes & grain elevators in a multi-stage process. There was also an older horse drawn mill wheel on display, but it is not operating.
We also tried to get to some caves in a nearby town, but it became obvious as it “got furthur and furthur away” that we weren’t going to make it before closing. We all may go back tommorow afternoon (Sunday).
The shoppers returned sucessfully with the main requirement: A present for Gyrui & family for all their work. There was a mad scramble to sign the card as Gyrui arrived with Susan and Thomas (I’ve been told we have to call him Tommy now). Gyrui presented us with survival certificates and some Hungarian white wine, and in turn (after a bruce pause to increase suspense) we presented them with a Canon digital camera (actually that was my idea…. it had been difficult to think of something useful for them all).
We watched the Hunagrian day fireworks on TV (went on for ages!) which had been delayed from their normal date earlier this month due to the floods. There were some strange lights shining up and about in the centre of Orfu, but on investigation they turned out just to be a light outside a pretty ordinary looking disco.
I have built a bit of a web page (it is soooo slow doing much with images on this old laptop!) but have not yet had the opportunity to upload it anywhere. May have to wait till we get to Slovakia.
The Twin Towers
Well after all the activity of the last week today was to be mostly a relax prior to the championships. After a very laid back start of 9:30am Gyrui took us to the TV tower overlooking Pecs. As well as the city itself we’d visited on Thursday, we could also spot some of the areas we’d run in towards Orfu. Gyrui also pointed out the gruelling ARDF course Danny had set for him to practice the week before… Evil !
The TV Tower
Gyrui had worked at the TV tower buildings years before. They also used to monitor the ham bands for “good protocol” at listening stations there ! Later Gyrui described how he was often monitored himself during socialisation; speaking another language (German), being intelligent and good at electronics made him a prime suspect for crimes against the state.
We also climbed a nearby public tower on a neigbouring hill that we could see from the TV tower to get a better view towards Orfu. From the 2nd tower we could see the bigger of the two Orfu lakes. Next door was an obvious military TDOA direction finding setup.
The area of this tower is an old volcanic region with rock just below the surface, so the trees tend to be fairly short and the rain falls staright through the porus rock cracks. Gyrui refered to this as ‘cast’ region.
Afterwards Gyrri & Tommy had to leave us as Tommy had a school opening ceremony for the start of the school year this afternoon (Sunday since it was a church school).
We made another attempt to get to the caves but were foiled yet again ! This time we were driving, but when we got into the car we found the gauge was on E. On advice from the information centre in Orfu we headed off on a10km trek to the closest fuel station. Despite being assured it would be open it was in fact shut (well it was Sunday). After enquiring for Benzino (the local could speak only Hungarian and Spanish) we found the closest from there was another 20km. No guarantee they would be open either. Instead we elected to limp back to Orfu on fumes hoping we’d make it back the 10km…. so much for the caves, which would have only been a 12km round trip. Oh well. Turns out the gauge misreads considerably and there is about 100km on E, but we weren’t to know.
Susan, Gyrui and Tommy appeared again after dinner (bearing another bottle of home made red wine from Gyrui’s father). Danny is due to return late tonight from the orienteering competition. Update: In the car now on the way to Slovakia. We have two cars and one mini-van so it’s quite comfy. It was an early start though, and since we’re not really on a major highway it could take a while. As we go through each town we see the kids all dressed up for the 1st day at school.