I have a friend who enjoys exploring the beach with his metal detector, listening for buried treasure. Most of the time, he scores random scraps of metal, but he still maintains the hope that one day, he will be rewarded with a valuable find.
Picking up trash has the same element of surprise and discovery, and even the chance of finding a real treasure. While my most valuable find so far has been a $5 bill, I have uncovered a lot of interesting items. Among the cans, used diapers and candy wrappers, I have also found a six-pack of unopened wine coolers (only missing one bottle), romance novels, and a bag of weed. Couches and shopping carts are routine, as are fresh DNA samples (enough said).
One of my favorite discoveries, however–if favorite is the appropriate word for such a find–was a grave site not far from the trail, blocked from public view by a fallen tree. The site was outlined by a rectangle of neatly arranged rocks, each about the size of a large fist. The headstone was an actual headstone that had broken in two pieces, most likely “borrowed” from the city cemetery.
Is there a body buried beneath that headstone? Or maybe just a load of trash…