Mia surprised us at Christmas time by stating, when asked what she would like from Father Christmas, that she would like a Metal Detector! She'd never mentioned this before, but we were pleasantly surprised, in that it wasn't the usual novelty piece of plastic from Hawkins Bazaar! (We were also secretly excited at the thought of going metal detecting!).
So hubby did his resarch, and purchased "a good one", suitable for both adults and children, with an LCD screen to show you exactly what it thinks it is detecting, and also included a book on the coins of England & the United Kingdom. Mia was VERY pleased on Christmas morning!
So out we went on the Wednesday after Christmas, or rather I stayed in the warm with Baby Boy and Nanny, whilst Grandpa and Hubby braved the cold and took Mia up the hill. As children do, Mia soon became side-tracked in some imaginery game, whilst Grandpa and hubby were in their element - and soon Grandpa was digging frantically, whilst Hubby was holding on to the beeping Metal Detector, trying to contain his excitement at the fact that the LCD screen was stating "ring"!. Mia's interest was instantly renewed, and the three of them waited in great anticipation for Grandpa to unearth the "ring"...but it wasn't a ring, - it was a teapot lid!! The Metal Detector had simply sensed the circular "ring" shape. Grandpa and hubby were deflated, but Mia was absolutely thrilled! - Oh how easy children are pleased!!
However, on the way home, all three of them cold and in need of tea and hot mince-pies, the MD began to persistently beep again - this time displaying "coin". Hubby and Grandpa were dubious, and certainly didn't dig with the same enthusiasm as with the teapot lid (!)..but it WAS a coin! A very worn, but ever so slightly identifiable 1861 penny!
We were all pleased with this -ok, so it wasn't Bronze Age, or particularly old or worth anything, but to us, it was treasure!
That night, as i was tucking Mia up in bed, I asked her what her favourite part of the day had been..and without any hesitation whatsoever, she gave me a huge smile and replied "finding my teapot lid"!
I realised then, that to Mia, the teapot lid was just as exciting as the coin - more so, in her case, just as I had loved, at her age, to unearth pieces of long ago broken china and pottery. I absolutely loved to visit friends who lived in a beautiful old rectory, purely for the fact that at the bottom of the large garden, was an old rubbish dump. I would spend hours digging up pieces of Asiatic Pheasant and the like, which i would take home and store in a treasure chest style box. There is still part of me today that cannot resist picking up a piece of broken china from the ground, which usually finds it's way home in my pocket, for no other reason other than it being a childhood habit. I am the same with fragments of birds' egg shell - I still cannot leave it on the ground if i find any! As a child i would spend hours hunting for egg shells, and keep them in margerine pots with clingfilm over the top.
Anyway, i'm getting a little side-tracked, it's safe to say that Mia is very similar to me, in that I would probably have been just as thrilled with the teapot lid as she is! I'd just forgotten for a while. So out we went again today, this time Nanny and I wrapped Baby Boy up in his pram and came too - we didn't want to miss anything this time! We watched for a while as Grandpa and Mia plodded along the old "Monks" trail which is adjacent to the current old lane, at the top of one of Nanny & Grandpa's fields. We admired the view:
Grandpa and Mia were so camouflaged in the undergrowth, that only Mia's hat was visible amongst the trees:
We decided to leave them to their fun and took Baby Boy for a nice walk along the lane, and i took some more photos; as we were leaving, Mia shouted that Grandpa was digging up an old plate!
On the way home we met them coming the other way, Mia running towards us holding something up, pleased as punch. It was the "plate"..which had actually turned out to be nothing more than an old rusty enamel washing up bowl! we cannot think how it ended up there, but it was more than a foot down:
This one didn't make it home with us, thankfully. We managed to persuade Mia that it would be much better off staying behind in Nanny's garden and she can make do with a photograph instead, which is now on her shelf of "finds" next to the beloved teapot lid..and the coin, of course!
I'm already looking forward to the next time...i'd love to hear if anyone else has ever been, and what you might have found..? xx