Virgin Site Discovery, page 21

Leaving The House Without A Set Of Spare Batteries May Cause A Grand Disappointment

I began metal detecting in a circular pattern around the last dug hole. Finally I heard a signal for which I had been waiting for two days - silver! Like a sapper on a mine field, I carefully removed the dirt inch by inch. And then, I saw it - a reeded edge of an old large silver coin sticking out of dirt!

I did not clean the dirt off the coin not to destroy its value. But I could tell it was a large silver coin from the 18th century! Later, I brought it home, placed it into a soap bath, kept it there for an hour, and then rinsed it with warm water. The coin turned out to be a 1764 Poltina (50 Kopeks, one half of Rouble) minted during the rule of Catherine II.

1764 Poltina Coin Before Being Cleaned

1764 1 Poltina Coin After Being Cleaned

1764 1 Poltina (50 Kopeks) Tsarina Catherine II

I was going to recheck the hole when Tahhir came over and asked me why I was stuck in one spot for so long. When I explained the moon landscape around and showed him my last find, Tahhir's jaw went down. He seemed to be genuinely surprised. Unfortunately, the batteries of Tahhir's detector had just died so we had only one functional machine, my Minelab Explorer.

I explained to Tahhir that a coin cache could be buried at the spot as the "coin scatter" had indicated. I offered him to dig a prospecting hole while I would be checking the dirt taken out of it at the same time. Tahhir agreed and we began carrying out our tasks. While he was cutting the plugs of dirt and flipping them on a side, I was scanning them with a small coil. Soon I received one more "coin" signal produced by a 1731 1 Denga coin.

After Tahhir took the first layer, 8 inches deep, of dirt out of the rectangular hole that was six feet long and two feet wide, I continued searching for a good signal and got one. But who could guess what happened next? My Explorer's batteries had suddenly died too!

We just sat there in silence for a minute. I realized that the batteries did not get fully recharged last night. It was totally idiotic as I did not have another set of spare batteries with me. And it was our last day of searching this site...

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