Treasures are not necessarily buried, or things found in antique shops, flea markets or city dumps. Treasures can be relationships with others, acquaintances or friendships — like the expression, “Just having your friendship is a treasure.”
On a Sunday afternoon, when considering our entertainment for the day, we took another look at the copy of a journal that we have noting an account of the Civil War period. The journal was kept by a person who bore my family name and lived in Darien. He described how difficult life was during that period. We visited the city to get whatever we could learn. Everyone we talked to took time out to explain all the present day activities that take place, but they had no knowledge of the person for whom we were in search of. I believe that somewhere, someone or something will lead us to the history of that person. We will continue our search for that treasure.
We have a treasure on our deck, which is a wrought-iron table and six chairs in excellent condition that we found at the county dump. They date back to the 1940s or 1950s and are considered a treasure to us mainly because of the way we came into possession of them. I was unloading some rubbish when a limousine pulling a trailer backed up beside my truck. A man who was dressed like a chauffeur got out and began to unload the table and chairs from the trailer. A stately looking lady sat in the back seat of the limousine. At my eager request, he loaded the items into my truck.
Treasures can be experiences and events worthy of being committed to memory, and they shouldn’t be treated lightly. For example, we stopped in Ludowici one Sunday morning for breakfast. People were sitting around in booths and at the counter. They looked like the people I’ve known all my life. The waitress came over to take our order. I ordered ham and eggs, grits, toast and red-eye gravy.
“Red-eye gravy?” she asked, laughing. “What’s that?”
I was stunned for a moment. “What! You don’t know what red-eyed gravy is?”
It was all fun and merry-making. Everyone seemed to get into in the act, maybe because of my Southern accent. I thought we found an unknown city in Georgia, but I soon learned that the city was renowned for its strict law enforcement. The event is a moment to remember — and a treasure.
On another occasion, I had worked all day removing some rain gutters from my home. To me, they were as worthless as a handful of dirt. I managed to fold and bend them enough for hauling in my pickup to the county dump. I backed up to the dumpster to unload them, but before I could get out of my truck, another pickup pulled alongside.
The driver got out of his truck, walked over and asked, “Sir, could I take them off your hands?”
Amazed, I said, “What could you possibly want with these bent-up old gutters?”
“I’m building a tool house and I have been looking for the older gutters for a long time.”
There is an abundance of treasures all around us as we do our daily chores, carrying out our duties and responsibilities. Although there are many treasures, some of which we never consider, we should consider this one: Just walking around with a sound mind and a full belly is a great gift — and in itself, is a trove of treasures.
Bond lives in Richmond Hill. He writes regularly for the Bryan County News.