You sometimes find the most unusual thing while out metal detecting. What’s been yours? My most unusual find happened today, and it wasn’t a relic, artifact, jewelry or anything I’d even consider keeping.
I ventured about eight miles to a high school this morning, knowing they’d had a huge crowd at their Friday night home football game; both teams are state ranked and, judging by the amount of food trash scattered on the grounds, I was right.
Fourteen months ago I hunted this same stadium; under the visitor’s side stands I dug a man’s gold wedding band. Maybe I’d have the same kind of luck this day.
It was a little cool as I geared up a hundred yards from the football field. The access gate to the close-in parking area was locked, so I had to make the trek up the hill. That’s ok though, because I can use the added exercise; one of the benefits of our hobby, right?
Let me say this now: at schools or parks, I NEVER hunt athletic fields. Ever, unless they’ve been abandoned, such as Liberty Park’s baseball and soccer fields. I obtained permission to hunt those, even though they haven’t been in use for years, because I would have felt guilty otherwise.
During the two hours I spent there I unearthed all the usual stuff: wadded foil food wrappers, pull tabs, a few nails, a key…all of which went into my waist bag, which I use for trash in addition to holding my hand trowel. My pinpointer’s velcro sleeve is fitted to the outside of it, as is a spring-loaded D-ring that keeps my truck keys secured. I also dug up over $6 dllars in coinage.
The unusual find?
It was something I’d never found before, something I’m sure its owner fretted over when she discovered she’d lost it.
A Citibank credit card, issued just last month. It lay in the last section I checked, partially covered by an oil-stained popcorn bag but sticking out just enough to allow me to see it.
The visiting team was from the next county west of me, and I decided to conduct an internet search of the owner’s name once I got home. Failing that, I’d have to wait until Monday and call the visiting school on the off chance they’d know the owner. Small school districts are like small towns: everyone knows everybody else.
The internet source I checked said the gal lived in a small city in that county; I could have accessed her address and phone number, but I wasn’t gonna anti-up ten bucks to do it. It then dawned on me that the police department there might have the woman’s contact information in their records, so I called them.
Success! The dispatcher told me the woman’s information was in their system; knowing she couldn’t give it to me, I asked that she take my name and number and make contact with the card’s owner, requesting that she call me. A couple of hours later I got a call from the card’s owner, ‘Mary’, who proceeded to thank me profusely. We had a very pleasant conversation, with her telling me she was happy that an honest person had found it, even though she’d cancelled the card Friday night when she realized she’d lost it. I replied that I’d spent 31 years as a police officer and wouldn’t think of anything but returning it to her.
In the end she asked that I destroy the card since a new one would be on its way. ‘Mary’ then asked for my address, saying she’d like to send me something for my kindness.
Her thanks was reward enough for me. I needed nothing else from this nice gal.
After all, isn’t that what we metal detectorists do? Return lost items if we can identify an owner?
It’s a great feeling.