I found myself on a walk through one of the oldest neighborhoods in Austin: Hyde Park. At the end of the nineteenth century, it was the city’s first suburb. Now it is unquestionably inside the borders of central Austin. It still has many of the fingerprints of a wealthy neighborhood such as a lack of sidewalks (and inflated property values). But markers of wealth and privilege change over time, as evidenced by the yards with goats and chickens in them. It is also home to a fairly new cache. As you can tell, one of these bolts is not like the others. It’s also not magnetic. I’m pretty sure it’s epoxied on there. I know that the CO is quite new and all, but that’s questionable as cache placement goes. Especially because the location is somewhat of a source of nostalgia.
Unless you’re from here or have seen Dazed And Confused, you’ve probably never heard of a Moonlight Tower. They’re a bit nostalgic for me because my very first cache, long since archived, was part of a series devoted to the towers. Even this one was familiar for a reason I couldn’t pin down. Consulting my past logs, I had gotten a cache from that series here before, also long since archived, but once placed across the street. On a certain level, it’s nice to see another new cache here. On another level, this probably qualifies as vandalism. Being that the towers are on the National Register of Historic Places, gluing a bolt to it seems unwise at best and destructive at worst. Considering that this same CO also inspired my recent rumination on preserving urban architecture, this is a troubling trend. I know that the CO probably means no harm, but I find myself pondering if I should reach out to them about it or not. I don’t want to be “that guy,” but if I knew someone had mounted a fake bolt like this to the Statue of Liberty or something similar, I would probably say something. I prefer my vandals to be either musical or (if of the Rome-sacking variety) in the past. It does no harm now, but one day, when the CO is out of the game, this bolt will still be stuck there. Someone will unscrew it, wonder why it is hollow, and see “geocache” printed on the log. That can’t bode well for the reputation of Our Thing.