718. Manhattan, Riley County (KS096)

Start spreading the news!  Oh, wait…  Not that Manhattan.  The other Manhattan!  At least the one in Kansas as opposed to the other, less important ones.  I liked the courthouse.  Any of you who have followed me for a while probably predicted that the slightly rough look appeals to me for reasons I can’t entirely explain.  Sure, I see some of its artifice now, but that doesn’t detract from my enjoyment.  Also, I really like the grotesques at the front entrance!  Fun fact: if a waterspout or drain connects to it, it’s a gargoyle.  If it’s merely ornamental, it’s a grotesque.  Useless information, but that’s what I trade in. 

The sun was starting to go down, and I had something extra I needed to accomplish before I left town.  Down the road from the courthouse at the appropriately named City Park is a flag display devoted to the partnership between Manhattan and Dobřichovice in the Czech Republic.  I went for a quick and easy cache, which turned out to be a magnetic key box and not under a flagpole skirt as I expected.  Believe me, I had the clipboard ready and had even composed a quick story in my head about pole mount inspections for the muggles jogging, biking, walking, and just generally existing around the park.  It wasn’t needed, so that worked out nicely.  Having done that, I set off for my extra second accomplishment.  As fate would have it, I needed to talk to the CO of the cache, the one and only Semmels123.  He had just gotten back from MOGA, so he was understandably tired.  He was also in the middle of broadcasting as part of an episode of Geocache Talk.  He still made time for me because I had something important to do.

Ladies and gentlemen (or however you identify—I don’t mean to be gender assumptive), I give you the Kansas 105 County Challenge. Normally it’s not supposed to be signed until one has completed every county, but he was kind enough to let me sign it that night. If you take note of the state/county designation number in the title of this post, it is precariously close to 105. Yes, I would finish Kansas on the way home, hitting the last county before I left the state. I also waved to the assemblage on Geocache Talk, as some of them might be curious about why I, a resident of Austin, would be momentarily with them on the show in the middle of Kansas! I told them why I was there and that my final counties were Kingman and Reno. Full disclosure: this was a bit of a fib because I wouldn’t be there until the next day. Also, I think I misspoke that I was finishing in the town of Kingman in Reno County, so I hope everyone merely thought I tripped over my words and thought about the two counties. But that’s not terribly important. And with that, I bid everyone adieu to get back to their discussion of WorldWide CacheFest while I continued on to…

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