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Letter to the Editor

I tried orienteering for the first time on March 25 at Willow Springs. It was fun. I did the Yellow course so I did not need the compass so much. I was frustrated at first because my hands were cold and my gloves too bulky to work the compass, and I wasn't sure I was doing it right....not because of the instruction, that was great. The girl in the red hat was helpful, knowledgeable and extremely sweet, and attractive as well. I was nervous about not understanding, but she had way of putting me at ease the way she explained and joked with me. She was a good teacher ( but maybe I should have concentrated on the instruction a little more!).

I started off punching the wrong control and in the wrong square, but it got better as I went. I had to break my habit of hiking along without observing my surroundings. Instead, I had to concentrate on selecting a route, reading the map, and looking for features I could identify along the way. That was a fun l earning process.

It warmed up after I got going and that was nice. I caught up to three guys and kind of went along with them cause they seemed to know what they were doing. They didn't seem to mind my tagging along. They were nice. In fact, everyone there was nice. That was great because I came all the way from East Moline just for this event. I was worried about driving in Chicago, not knowing anyone at the meet, and it being my first time. For a while I was driving around at the wrong place until I saw the road markers. And since it was snowing so I was doubly afraid of being lost.

I tell you this to let you know how much I appreciate Rachel Ashley and all the other people who put it on. You all made it a great experience for me, and for that I thank you. It takes a lot for a person to love to do something, but take hours out of their fun to provide others the experience. I will practice orienteering here at a park and hopefully come to another of your events.

Thanks Again All.

Tim Arnett
East Moline, Illinois

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