Got a text from a friend on Wednesday: "A bunch of us are doing an escape room on Friday night. Want to join us?" I'd heard about them but never done one before, so I signed on with enthusiasm.
This particular one was Area 51-themed and rated very difficult. Six combination locks to get open. Two keys to find, one unlocking a strongbox and the other a door. A cipher to decode, allowing you to reach into a large glass-topped box to retrieve objects. Clues to notice in maps and drawings on the wall, including some only visible in blacklight (of course, the blacklight was inside one of the combination-locked drawers.) Etc, etc. And as per the norm with these rooms, we only had an hour to get all of the puzzles solved and "escape." A big clock digitally counts down on one wall.
There were eight of us in the group. A high-school sophomore, a college senior who will soon become a Spanish teacher, an auto mechanic and his preteen son. A retired electrical engineer, an artist, and a guy who works at a rock-climbing gym. And me. Six males, two females ranging in age from 16 to 60. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any hobby other than geocaching that would bring this highly unlikely collection of people together and make them good friends, but there it is. Pretty much the only thing we have in common is that we all like to solve puzzles!
We had a BLAST. Oh, and we escaped with almost four minutes to spare. :)