Buried treasure, at my chimney

By Stephen Harris - For The Tribune

Stephen Harris Back In The Hometown

We’re just now learning about a man living on the shore of Badin Lake, north of Albemarle, who started digging in his backyard to plant three spirea bushes. Instead, he struck treasure.

Leonard Shelor found chiseled, stone blades believed to be up to 6,000 years old, according to The Associated Press.

OK, so it’s not Blackbeard the Pirate’s chest of gold. But it did make some anthropologists yell yo-ho-ho. They found 81 blades that some Paleo-Indians stored but never retrieved.

Haven’t we all dreamed of finding buried treasure? Even the Bible contains a parable about a man who discovered a buried coin in a field, then went and cashed in all of his wealth to buy the field and lay claim to the valuable, hidden coin, an allegory of seeking eternal life with Christ. (Matt. 13:44)

So I look around and spot the little mound in the northeast corner of my yard next to the blooming Sweet William flowers. Humm. That mound’s odd. Could someone a long time ago have buried something there? Something good?

Makes me want to get my shovel.

Love of buried treasure makes time capsules so popular these days. There’s one in Elkin Park placed by North Elkin School alumni in 1989 and is to be opened in 2039.

Humm. I wonder what did they bury in there? Better mark my calendar so I’ll remember to grab my walker and attend the opening of that time capsule and see.

Nearly three years ago at my old church in Hickory they opened a time capsule that had been buried way back when I lived there in the 1980s.

You bet I went to the opening and was tickled to learn that they had buried, among other things, a church directory with my old address and old phone number. Of course I had forgotten them. I smiled as I remembered.

The anthropologists who dug up the stone blades along the shore of the Yadkin River-fed lake in Montgomery County have studied them for more than two years now. They’re just now revealing what they’ve learned.

Kinda makes you want to bury your own little cache to put a charge into some discoverer in the distant future.

Well, I’ve beaten you to it. Last summer I was up in the attic running a TV antenna wire. I was pretty proud of the cheap little cordless drill, my first cordless model, that I gotten at a bargain at an outlet store just a couple of years before.

So here I am drilling a hole in the ceiling to run the wire. My attic is not built to be used. It’s small and cramped and hot and dark. After drilling the hole I put down my nice, shiny, black drill.

A couple of decades before I had laid down a layer of attic insulation. Enough time had passed to have forgotten that I had put a square of pink insulation to cover a crevice between the chimney and a closet wall.

Guess where I laid my drill? That’s right. Onto that very piece of insulation with nothing underneath. The drill and the insulation plunged into the black unknown below. My little drill was gone.

Can’t you do something? I was asked. Well, I could try taking a sledgehammer and knocking out the closet wall to retrieve my drill.

Oh, no. My black drill still lies in the black gloom, between chimney and closet wall, never to see the light of day until some demolition worker two centuries from now surveys the rubble of my old house and notices something strange.

By then they may not even know what a cordless drill is. Or be able to read the words Black & Decker.

I can see them calling in the anthropologists and The Tribune to report on the unearthed treasure from the distant past. Hope they have fun studying my lost drill.

Stephen Harris returned home to live in State Road.

Stephen Harris

Back In The Hometown

http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/web1_Stephen-Harris-mug-12-07-1.jpgStephen Harris

Back In The Hometown

By Stephen Harris

For The Tribune

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