Monday, February 6, 2017

How to Find Buried Treasure

A memory...from 3 years ago :)

    "I realized I'll never save enough to get a laptop, but at least I can buy a kindle," the Scribe said.  "My friend will sell me hers.  I just need eighty dollars."
    Her friend--that sounded like a recipe for disaster.  "And where are you going to get eighty dollars?" I asked.  My four kids gathered around.  For some reason even Doctor Jones (my toddler) wanted to hear what the Scribe would say.
    "I just need a shovel," the Scribe said.
    "What? Why?" It made no sense to me, but the other kids seemed to understand.
    "Mom, I know what she's talking about," the Hippie said.  "Buried treasure!  Your buried treasure!"
    "Exactly." The Scribe nodded, winking.  She sat on the couch before her three siblings joined her.  "Mom, can you tell us the story again?  Come on, you know we love it.  Plus, I need the dough."
    I snorted--those kids kill me.
    "Fine."  I sat on the coffee table, suddenly understanding what they had referred to.  "Once upon a time, there was a little girl.  Her name was . . . Elisa!"  The kids giggled as I went on.  "She worked, harder and harder, earning every penny, dime, nickle and quarter she could . . .  She sold lemonade.  She picked asparagus! She even scrounged change from her brother's room--when he wasn't looking."
    It was true.  I must have been about seven by the time I'd saved more than Bill Gates is worth.  I toiled--feeling the joy that comes from a hard day's work.  I hid all the money under my bed.  Sure that sounds miserly, but I wasn't trying to be an angel.  I stole a bunch of my brother's best socks after that--just the left ones.  I filled those suckers with change.  At dinner, I laughed into my soup when my brother asked where his socks kept going.
    My mom smiled sweetly--so innocent--and said, "That's the mystery with socks.  No one knows where they go."
    Except me!  I had them--dang it--I knew more than most grown-ups did.
    Anyway, days crept into months and summer finally came.  My mom knelt gardening, and when I snatched the hand shovel--she had no idea it was me.  I tiptoed to the backyard and that's when I started digging.
    The backyard was massive, stretching halfway with grass until it became dirt and went all the way back to a creepy alley that had my name written all over it.
    I dug the biggest hole the world's ever seen--and I must have done it quick, 'cause my mom didn't even see me!  I was a ninja, a rich ninja and nothin' could stop me--not even taxes.
    I grabbed all my change that was still in my brother's best dress socks, then I threw them in the hole and covered 'em up.  It was just a random spot in the yard--a place that needed some kind of marker.  I didn't want to be obvious, so I took a rock and made a huge "X" in the ground.
   It felt really great.  My family didn't know how rich I was, and that was all right.  I bet my mom would have let me out of chores and everything IF she knew I was a billionaire.  But I didn't want them loving me just for my money--that would've been terrible.  I smiled thinking about all of it.  That night my dreams were wonderful about affording chocolate fountains and hosting big parties.    
   It wasn't until the rains came, that my hopes crashed to the ground.  I stared out my window.  The "X" was gone!  All my hard work--was hidden.
    My mom insisted on dressing me for school.  I wore some pansy dress and bows that made me look like a kitten.  When my mom wasn't looking, that's when I ran outside and dug into the mud.  I made hole after hole, but I couldn't find my funds in the rain.  That's the trouble with being good at hiding things--I even hid it from myself.  I went inside and that's when I got in trouble.  "What . . .  Your dress! What have you been doing in the mud?" my mom asked.  But I wouldn't talk--pirates NEVER reveal the location of their buried treasure.  As I took a bath, my brother asked again about his missing socks and I did chuckle a bit--he'd never know.  But it did bother me--maybe that's why God sent the rain.  I'd hidden money in stolen socks--that made it sinful, practically.

   I looked at each of my kids and finished the story. 
"It wasn't until we moved to the big city that I cried.  I waved to the house.  My family all thought it was because I loved the place.  That wasn't it at all though.  I was just sad to be leaving my fortune behind."
    "Wow," the Hippie said.
    "How much dough did you bury?" the Scribe asked.
    "I don't know.  It might have been five bucks for all I know.  But when I was little it seemed like a hundred."
   "I knew it," she said.  "How far away is that place--does someone still live there?"
    "It's too far away.  Plus, someone does live there.  We just can't sneak in and dig up their yard."
    The Scribe nodded.  "I guess I'll have to find another way.  But it was a good idea . . . and a good story.  After all, how many kids have mothers who used to bury treasure, just for fun."
    "Not many." The Hippie laughed before continuing. "Maybe just us."
    They all got up and left.  I gazed through the window to our backyard.  Rain splattered the dirt and for some reason I couldn't quit smiling.


  1. "I was a ninja, a rich ninja and nothin' could stop me--not even taxes"
    I love when you infuse comedy into your already funny stories!

  2. I agree with Stephanie! What a fun story.

  3. LOL you better hope the tax man doesn't see this, he may come for you and that five dollars...hahahaha

  4. First off you might want to mention to the scribe that she can get a new kindle for the same price her friend is trying to sell her one for. Reminds me of a friend who is always buying used things off eBay for more than they would cost if he just got them new. :)

    When I was a kid I considered the buried treasure route too, especially since it seemed everyone knew my hiding spots. In the end, though, paranoia did me in. We had three dogs and they were all diggers. Sooner or later they would have uncovered my spoils and chances are I wouldn't have been around when they did.

    Awesome story btw!

  5. You are such a GREAT mom--& storyteller!!!

  6. Ha ha Rick, I was thinking the same thing!Why buy used when you can get a new one for the same price. I love these stories of yours, for some reason I am still smiling too :)

  7. My Dad buried treasure and lost it once. Not when he was a kid though: he buried his wallet on the beach while he went swimming, and forgot to dig it up before he left!

  8. I have no buried treasure that comes in ones and twos. But today I saw my three best girls, who took me out for lunch. I held the baby and kissed the toddler and thanked God their mom is nicer than any of my sisters.


  9. Fab story, you rock!

  10. Yes--a new Kindle for that!
    Loved the story. Do you think the kids will dig any holes in your back yard? ;)

  11. Make sure the kids don't dig holes in the back yard and hide their treasures--that's if you decide to move.

    Now I know where my socks go.

    P.S.I started reading The Golden Sky.

  12. Keep an eye on your good jewelry and watch the yard for unexplained dirt patches! Hide the shovel...

  13. Didn't your mom ever do the laundry - it's the dryer that eats the socks! ;)

    Lesson learned: there's a reason pirates bury treasure in boxes and treasure chests - they're easier to find, even in the rain! I do wonder what happened to all that money, though. Maybe the kids from the new family found it, like on a treasure hunt?

  14. This reminded me, when I was a kid (and a few times as an adult) I made my own treasure maps by soaking the paper in tea and burning the edges off. Never found or planted any treasure though =(

  15. LOL...I can see it. The new owners installing a sprinkler system, and having to stop and pull out socks full of change, from the ground...hahahaha

  16. This is the cutest story. You can totally steal socks, and no one will ever think anything of it, because socks just disappear...brilliant!

  17. Dear Elisa,
    You are a natural born story teller. And I suspect your children have inherited your gift for you are also a natural born mother. What a blessing you are to all of us who have come to know you through this blog.


  18. Great story!! My twins are always asking us to tell them "stories without pages". I might need to channel your storytelling one of these days. Take care.

  19. This was fun on many levels. I love it.

  20. I read this one the other day, but my Internet was acting up and could not comment… Just post where you used to live so that the kids and I can bring metal detectors and shovels. We are tired of digging up old aluminum cans and nails in the fields around us… :)

  21. Dear Elisa, what a role-model you are being for those four always-ears-open children--not only a pirate and a hoarder and a hole digger but someone who's creative in her thinking and always ready for the next big adventure! Peace.