This weekend Doc and I celebrated his birthday at the San Diego Wild Animal Park (WAP). I really wasn’t going to focus on PennyFinding. We planned to take the tram for the Journey into Africa as our first activity. We hoped the animals were equally as foolish as we were in staying out in the heat (versus heading for shelter where we would not see them).
Doc made a stop to use the restroom and found Penny #1. I was in the Okavango Outpost staying cool and waiting for him. His darn penny find infected me! I was doing fine until then! I could not resist looking at the cash register area. Sure enough. There was a penny showing under the counter! Then a nickel and then a penny. (Coins #2-4). It was fun to Share the story with Sarah.
We had a delightful morning playing and attending the various shows. We got a two-day pass so that we could leave during the hot part of the day when the weekend crowd would be heaviest.
We headed back in to Escondido for a wonderful Mexican lunch - better food and better prices. As we finished lunch at 2:45 pm (note the time) I asked Doc - it is your Birthday and we have 2-3 hours before going back to the WAP. What would you like to do next? ;-) Shopping? Walking? Napping? His reply, “Let’s see if we can get 12 coins. No, let’s make that a Baker’s Dozen - or more!” I said, “It sounds like you are challenging the Angels to deliver 12+ coins in the next 60 minutes. Let’s go!” A very serious case of Penny Fever.
Needless to say, the afternoon adventures were hilarious. What a movie it would make!
Stop #1 Rite Aid Took my BP Reading as an excuse to walk to the rear of the store. Two pennies in one aisleway. I stopped near the exit door to write those down and stopped on another penny. (#3 out of 12). That made 25% of the Dozen Challenge. We were on our way …
Stop #2 Starbucks Not a drive through L Doc got coffee. No coins.
Sing Song Here: Penny Angels, Penny Angels, what do you say?
Can we find a dozen in just one hour today?
The 4th very mangled penny was found at that moment. (#4 of 12)
Stop #3 Walgreens Penny outside by the pay phone (Coin #5 of 12). Doc spotted a penny under a DVD vending machine. Got down on his belly to retrieve it - along with another penny. (Coins #6&7 of 12) Also a plastic dime (not a legitimate find). We went into the store to search. Doc spotted a penny at the doorway just as we were leaving (Coin #8 of 12). We were now 40 minutes into the challenge and 2/3 the way to goal - right on track!
Stop #4 Shopping Center: 99¢ store, grocery store, KFC, and other stores.
Nothing there, and time was running out!
Doc said, “You gotta have faith! Let’s find a Target Rich environment”
Stop #5 7-11 I walked in and immediately saw a bright shiny penny. Good sign. Then I found Pennies 10&11 of 12. I was saying, “Just one more, just one more.” At 3:45 I picked up Penny #12! (Note the time). The Angels were right on time with the Goal!
Doc came in the store with the Penny he had found outside. The Baker’s dozen he had requested! I showed him where I found the first penny. His reply, “So why didn’t you pick up that other one too!” (#14 of 12)
I was getting back into the van when Doc said, “Go over to the gas pumps. There will be at least two coins there”. I did, there was. I picked up a penny, then a dime and did a bit of a cheer. There were 3 young guys and a big truck “hanging” there. They gave me that questioning look. I explained Penny Angels and the Dozen Challenge to them. As we were talking, a penny appeared next to the right foot of one of the guys. It would be too awkward for me to lunge across the guys and the gas line, so I asked if the lad would please hand the penny to me. He did. I wished desperately for my camera to capture the photo of those 3 guys with the penny. J Fun to SHARE with unexpected persons (or unsuspecting victims). J
Stop #6 Jack in the Box Penny spotted before I got out of the van. Very mangled one. Another one in a parking spot. Car moved from window; a penny (Coin #20 of 12)
Stop #7 Starbucks We intended to drive through, but way too crowded. Narrow channel. Too dangerous to walk through. Mission aborted - returned to car. Found a dime in front of van. (Coin #21 of 12).
Doc said, “25 is your favorite number, let’s shoot for it!”
Stop #8 Circle K I walked through ½ the gas pumps and was going to enter the store. Doc said’ “Two gas bays just cleared, go Find!” There was a penny in the first bay and a Quarter in the second bay! There was a penny in a parking spot behind the store. (Coin #24 of 12)
Car Wash Could not resist looking. Nothing in the usual spots - the vacuum at, the waiting area, the wipe down area. But a dime on the floor by the cash register! (Coin #25!) Yippee!
So the Penny Angles delivered the Dozen PLUS the Baker’s Dozen for a total of 25 coins in two hours!
Lesson #1: Have FAITH!
Lesson #2: The Penny Angels love to Play! How many times has that sure been proven over the past 200+ days?
We arrived back at the Wild Animal Park around 5:30 for our Caravan Photo Safari Tour. Doc suggested I make a Schmushed Penny as a souvenir for the day. As we approached the machine, I asked him which penny to schmush? He replied, “How about this one?” As he scooped up one a few feet from the machine! The Penny Angels delivered one specifically to schmush!
Next we checked in for our Photo Tour. The attendant Lauren said we had 20 minutes to wait. I told her I would rather go walking and Penny Finding - I’d be back soon. When I returned she asked if I found a penny? Of course!
For the next 3 hours we were on a Photo Tour - Night Moves. An Adults Only Experience. We fed the giraffes and rhinos. Then were treated to cheesecake, cookies, bar drinks, etc. We were presented with the “population increasing procedures” of the rhinos, as well as fun and games as we learned some peculiar information J of various species. Fun time!
Note: 9:20 p.m. Leaving the park. We now had a total of 31 coins for the day.
We had dessert, but no dinner. To Doc that meant a McDonald’s stop. There were 11 pennies, a dime, and a Quarter! I Shared the story with a group of teenagers in the big truck in front of us. Don’t think they quite knew how to digest what I was saying.
I did not order any food because: a) it would take several thousand steps already to burn off that cheesecake and cookies, b) I can pass on McDs burgers. Then I smelled Doc’s burger as he was eating it. So we SHARED the burger and planned to get another burger and more coins somewhere else! This man has a very serious case of Penny Fever.
We stopped at Rally’s Burgers - not for food, but so I could walk by the window while Doc went next door to check the Circle K! I waited forever for the one car to leave the window. While “on hold” and after cruising the lot 5-6 times, I finally found a penny. Then three pennies under the window.
There were 2 pennies at the next McDonalds.
So that makes 19 coins on the way from the Park to the Hotel. One was a 1936 wheat penny.
Today’s total: 50 Coins Q (2), D (4), N(1), P (43) = $1.38
Morning @ Park: Q (0), D (0), N (1), P (3) = $ .08
Afternoon: Q (1), D (3), N (0), P (21) = $ .76 25 coins + plastic dime
Evening @ Park: Q (0), D (0), N (0), P (2) = $ .02
Cruising: Q (1), D (1), N (0), P (17) = $ .52
One “Hit for the Cycle”
Yes, we ate way too many burgers and sodas doing this.
Of course we spent more in gasoline than we found in coins.
Yes, we spent 3-4 hours doing stupid stuff (but walking steps toward the 10,000 step goal)
It sure beats just lying around a pool or beach somewhere!
Plus, we Shared the Joy with a number of people who smiled for a moment or two J