An old man plods along a pristine beach at sunset with headphones on and a metal detector on the ground. He waves it over a choice piece of sand, and voila! The camera pans to a close-up of his hand holding a gold deblume. Then it is followed by a bunch of interviews of lucky metal detector owners who against all odds actually found something. And all you have to pay is 6 easy installments of $19.95! Could life get any better?
Well, just this morning, Chester Dodgyfield from Virginia Beach made a great discovery with his trusty metal detector (he calls her Susan). He found the lost city of Atlantis.
"Me and Suzy just went for a stroll on the beach, and all of the sudden she just wouldn't shut up. She was all beep this and beep that. So, I bent down, testing my arthritic back and started scraping away sand. After only about two handfuls I saw this thing that looked like a metal pumpkin. Well, I had to call Cheryl."
Cheryl is Mr. Dodgyfield's pet dog.
"So I call and I said to her, 'WE FOUND IT!' She said, "Found what?" And I repeated, 'WE FOUND IT!' This went on for quite some time, and people starting staring at me as I was barking into the phone...So anyway, I went to my neighbors house to borrow his backhoe."
After the first few hours, the beach was full of spectators. Local residents came out from coffee shops. Even some of the re-enactment actors from Colonial Williamsburg came by in carriages. It turned out that Mr. Dodgyfield's pumpkin was a portico on the top of what archaeologists later presumed to be a Temple.
"We got a call that some kook and his dog had found an artifact on the beach. I assumed it was a revolutionary era piece. Turns out we were wrong. We've never found the lost colony of Roanoke, but who could've guessed that we'd find Atlantis so close. If I weren't so excited right now, I might have more time to value the irony," said Harvey Moons, head researcher at the Duke University School of Archaeology.
Mr. Dodgyfield has been thwarted by local government officials from claiming his new prize. He submitted his claim under the notorious "Finders Keepers Rule" which up until now was unchallenged. Asked what he would do with Atlantis if the courts ruled in his favor he said, "I'd probably turn it into an amusement park. I think I'd be pretty competitive with Busch Gardens and that other resort in the Bahamas called Atlantis, because I got the real thing."
He sure does.