I’m not sure if I’ve written about one of my favourite things to do, Markeroni. Markeroni involves going to historic places and markers, taking a photo, and then ‘snarfing’ or logging them back on the website.
I love it because it gives me something to focus on while exploring places we’re in for work. I don’t think I’ve found a town or city we’ve been to yet that doesn’t have at least one historic place! I know it’s shocking, but sometimes I really do need a reason to get out of the house/motel room; Markeroni gives me that.
Second great thing about it is getting to see some truly cool things! A couple of my favourites have been this water fountain in New Plymouth:
And this historic wharf/jetty in Tauranga:
I also love the random stories/things I find while out looking for historic places! Like this plaque commemorating a ship sinking that killed 18 people:
That last one wasn’t actually a snarf, but it’s still a story I wouldn’t have found out about had I not been looking for the wharf!
That’s what I love about Markeroni the most, finding out about stories and things I wouldn’t otherwise have known about. For instance, back when I was in New Plymouth for work, a colleague and I went up Mount Taranaki to watch the sun set. While there I saw a sign to a memorial, and so naturally wanted to check it out! We found it, and discovered that it was commemorating the “heroism of Arthur Hamilton Ambury.” I had no idea who he was, or what the actual act of heroism was, but luckily the next day did a historic tour of New Plymouth and asked. Turns out that Ambury had attempted to save another guy trapped on the mountain and died in the attempt (along with the other person on the mountain). Had it not been for my interest in history and Markeroni I would have never found out about him! Obviously being a book lover I’m a great lover of stories, and what is history really but true stories?
The other great thing about this site is that you get to meet awesome people who are equally as passionate about history, and enjoy travelling with mascots (yeah, you totally get to carry stuffed animals around with you if you choose to!)! Then we get awesome things like this:
Those first two pictures are from a ‘snarfari’ (mashup of snarf and safari) I did in Washington DC at the BookCrossing (another of my favourite things!) convention (also a favourite thing) (so many favourite things!), and the second is from when Skyring and I had dinner with the Chief Markeroon (aka the founder of Markeroni). It’s so much fun to meet like minded people.
I’m partially writing this because Markeroni is awesome, and partly for ulterior motives. You see, Markeroni is currently fundraising through Indiegogo for, among other things, some new computers. At the writing of this we’re 30% funded with 23 days to go. I’m told there’s exciting new things in store, and I really, truly believe that this website could become a much more useful tool for not only people interested in exploring and finding out stories, but people who just want to be able to find out about these things over the internet. People like teachers, tourists, historians, and people who just like to be able to find things out on the internet. So, if you’ve got a spare dollar or more and think this might be the sort of thing you want around, might be interested in doing, or have people in your life who also fit those descriptions, maybe you could flick it our way…