I saw this via File 770:
A man takes off his baseball glove in Central Park. His wedding ring slips off undetected and disappears into the grass. Hours pass before he notices that it’s missing.
A woman reacts in a fit of anger, tossing her engagement ring into the ocean. As it hits the water, pangs of regret settle in.
A tourist visiting Canada removes five sentimental rings to sanitize her hands while in a rental car. Later, when she steps out, they are sent sprawling into the snow, and she doesn’t realize they’re gone until she’s on the flight back home. …
Usually, stories of this variety almost always end in tears. Yet these three people found their lost rings, frantically Googling some iteration of I lost my wedding ring and stumbling upon a network of metal detectorists who help people locate their misplaced jewelry. They had found their way to the Ring Finders, a service that pairs these people with one of 430 sleuths stationed around the world.
Isn’t that delightful? Aren’t you happy a service like this exists? Someone had an idea for a new kind of business that does something nice for people who otherwise have no recourse. Some ring finders concentrate on requests that offer a reward, some do it for free, and the middleman website that connects those who lose rings with those who find them stays in business by charging finders a rather modest annual membership fee.
One reason the metal detectorists have such a surprisingly good track record is that, through practice, they’ve honed a strategy on how to find rings. “If I can’t find them, I’m not sure that they are where they think they are,” says Mike Fish, a ring hunter who lives in Anchorage, Alaska. The 71-year-old retired firefighter does request a small fee—chocolate-chip cookies.
Also, I bet if people contacted this service and said please help me find my car keys, they could get someone to help with items beyond rings. I’m thinking of a friend who lost her keys at my place. We all searched and searched and I wound up loaning her my car until she could get another key (she lives an hour and a half away, so she really needed a car to get home).