Monday, September 21, 2009


We got C a metal detector for his birthday because there's nothing a mystery-reading first graders loves more (aside from Legos) than treasure hunting.
On our first outing to Megansett Beach we found an earring which C took straight away to school for show and tell.
We decided to forgo tuning out scrap metals such as those in pull tabs and aluminum because we thought that without them we might never find anything. In short we want to find gold rings, earrings, and all the bottle caps in between.
It occurred to me that the metal detector would have come in handy years ago when I sported only one pierced ear and was always getting hand-me-down earrings from people who'd lost their earring's mate. With the detector I could have gone out and found my own singleton earrings instead of waiting for friends to lose theirs.
Later in the week we discovered what a great scam the detector is. We took it over to Old Silver Beach, where the sand is curiously softer and finer than Megansett (I see the locals get the cheap, non-imported sand), and searched around on a beautiful afternoon when there were still a lot of beach goers enjoying the weather.
If you've ever seen an adult poking around a beach with a metal detector you probably thought to yourself that they were some kind of treasure-seeking freak – not so the small child. Treasure-seeking kids are cute – in a geeky sort of way. And, as it turns out, everyone loves them.
It reminded me of being a college student working on a photo journalism assignment on the subway where normally people would object to having a stranger snap photos of them. But say you are a student and they brighten right up about the whole thing.
It seems that everyone wants to encourage college students - and booty-seeking seven year olds.
People were dropping coins in the sand left and right for C to find. One couple apologized, saying that it wasn't much (all they could find between the seats of their car) but they'd hidden coins up the beach by where they were sitting. Another couple dropped quarters as they walked by.
At this rate I should be able to recoup the cost of the metal detector in no time.

song: Sandy • artist: Bruce Springsteen

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