Thursday, November 30, 2006

Meet Haley and Bill

Seven-year-old Haley and her grandfather, Bill, are walking through Central Park in Old Louisville on an unusually warm, sunny winter day with a metal detector and small shovel. Bill and Haley are treasure hunting, hoping to find a little piece of history. "We are looking for old coins and bits of metal that might tell us a little bit about what people did a hundred years ago", he explains. Bill loves history and has owned a metal detector for the past twenty years. He likes walking with the detector because it motivates him to get outside, while at the same time participate in something interesting.

Bill says he and Haley have found old silver coins, Indian head pins, quarters, not very many nickels, and a lot of pennies. Their biggest find so far was a quarter from 1900 that was buried eight inches underground. Bill says he has yet to find a silver or half dollar, but will keep looking until he does. Haley once found a little diamond earring on the ground and Bill proudly adds, “She didn’t even have a machine!”

Bill likes to visit old homesteads, farms and houses that have been torn down or abandoned with his metal detector. Any place he adds where he might find a Civil War battle relic or something similar. Although Haley likes history, her biggest interest is in nature. She came along with Bill today hoping to see two big owls in an Oak Tree that were spotted the other day. "I’m in first grade, and my teacher told me that if you see the owls in two days and then not again they have to have babies", Haley explains. "In other words they are going to have babies if you haven’t seen them", further explains Bill. Bill says Haley is excellent in school and can read, write and count up too three hundred. When asked what she wants to be when she grows up Haley says, " I want to be a veterinarian and cheerleader, but I’m not sure which one". Bill chuckles. Bill, himself, has been a musician for the past forty years and started playing the drums, initially with sticks on boxes after hearing the Beatles for the first time. For several years he played drums in a group around town called Dr. Don and the Love Dogs.

Haley is proud of her grandfather and has seen many of his metal treasures and even saw him perform live with his band once. Their mutual love of history, nature and treasure seeking make the duo a perfect match on this warm winter day.