***The following article is care of Shadeseeker, a veteran detectorist, and valued member of the Treasure Classifieds treasure hunting community.***
Every hobby has it aficionados whose devotion ranges from mildly interested, to avid, to outright impassioned. And while a report of an event from one pastime might evoke a yawn or maybe an “oh yeah?” response from a random observer, a second observer will be instantly hooked and ready to spend both time and money in pursuit of duplicating or even exceeding that first experience. I have no desire to jump from a plane flying at 10,000 feet, but one of my best friends has done it every weekend for most of his adult life. Now if I show that same friend a uniquely flaked stone age tool that I found on the farm, a find that has me enthralled at its rareness and its craftsmanship, he will look at it, handle it a few moments and say something like, “Oh, an arrowhead. You spent all day walking through the fields for that?” His response baffles me as much as my lack of interest for his hobby puzzles him. And so it goes for all of us and all of our amusements. To twist a popular phrase, we might say that one man’s thrill is another man’s boredom.
Now all of us who log in to TC Classifieds obviously have a common bond in our appreciation for the use of detectors. The range of that appreciation is apparent as one takes a look at this site over a period of time. We have visitors by the scores, as evidenced by the counter. Some of those visitors may never return while others come back for another look or two, their interest piqued by some of the postings available for our reading pleasure. Some of those will decide to stay on longer, as members of the TC community, and even among them the level of interest and dedication varies. We see a member appear from time to time with a comment or two, and maybe a posting and a picture. Others can hardly wait to share their finds and their comments of interest, support, and encouragement to fellow posters. Their presence on the site is as predictable and welcome as the morning sunrise. I read the postings here every day and I am always astounded at the variety and quality of the finds being shared, and the passion evident in their presentations. I’m not actively swinging a detector very much now, so I get my “fix” by enjoying what other detectorists are finding. Their zeal and dedication combined with some pretty amazing discoveries serve to inspire me to get out myself and share in the thrill again, once I am able to do so.
When I think about our common interests, I often wonder just what the “hot button” is for each of our individual members. Is it just simply finding something? That in itself could be rewarding. I remember very well when I found a fossil for the first time. Imagine a young kid finding quite by accident a testament in stone to life in a bygone era. Or is it bringing history to life; for instance, holding in your hand a small memento from the times our parents and grandparents. In keeping with the history theme, how about finding a relic from a particular era, such as the civil war or the time of the railroads, or the period of the frontier and forts. Treasure must also be a consideration for many, since the coins and rings we find have often have great value, as do the afore mentioned relics. Are there other aspects of the hobby that inspire us to delve into it so ardently? – exercise, outdoor adventures, friendships?
I have some insight as to what inspires a number of our members, simply from reading the posts and personal data sections. But I’d like to know more. How did you get started? How long have you done this? What is your particular “hot button?” What makes your day and what ruins it? In other words what is it about detecting that makes you want to do it and do it to the exclusion of other things? I would like to hear from you guys about this. An answer in the form of a blog entry would be fascinating reading to me, and I expect, to many others as well. As long or as short as you wish. The more we understand each other, the tighter will be our bond and our respect for one another. As Joe mentioned so eloquently not too long ago, this site is ours to use and the more we use it and the better we use it, the better it will be.
So, I’m waiting; let me and other readers know just what detecting does for you. While I’m at it, thanks to all who have welcomed me into the fold. I appreciate your friendship. Best wishes, Shadeseeker.