Treasure is a coming-of-age story about Erica. Still reeling from losing her mother to cancer, she is aloof and distant from her father. One night, Erica attends a party and goes too far with the drinking. She runs her car off the road and is taken to the hospital. Since this is her first offense she avoids jail time by doing community service. Ramona, her case worker, sets her up to fulfill her obligation at a soup kitchen run by Angela. Erica hates working there, feeling that she is being unfairly punished. But a new friendship based on a love for geocaching and the realization that the patrons of the soup kitchen are much worse off than she has ever been leads Erica to question her old attitudes towards the meaning of life.
Treasure – we all know it as something that is very special, important, or valuable – such as the life lessons Erica learns in her journey from a place of hurt and rebelliousness to acceptance and joy. Like old skin we sometimes have to shake off old attitudes that keep us from growing. Sometimes we need a little help discarding old ways. To me, growing up means learning to care more about others than yourself, and in the end, that’s what Treasure is about – treasuring our connection with others.
I knew going into grad school that I would be given my own classes to teach and it terrified me. I had never had so many people depend on me! I was afraid that I would fail them, but in the end it was my caring about others that helped me help others to flourish. I did a tremendous amount of growing during that time and it has helped shape who I am today. I appreciate that opportunity more than anyone will ever know.
This was all possible because when I was younger, there were those around me that helped me grow into the kind of person that could take on this kind of responsibility. So Treasure is an ode to that time in our lives when we still need others, and how we learn to give back. We all have to come of age and it’s arguably the most important part of our lives.
I’ve always thought geocaching was cool. When I starting reading about other people’s experience of geocaching I came across inspiring stories of people claiming that “geocaching saved my life” or “saved my family”. Many others express that it has “enhanced” their lives in a myriad of ways.
Getting outdoors is known to be good for you! So that’s where Erica had to go. Her life was nothing but bright lights and glowing screens. As she ventures out into the world she grows into it and becomes a part of it and it becomes a part of her. She had to reconnect with that which is natural in all of us…caring about others.