The recent 80 degree plus days meant early hiking. Saturday's hike was a four to five mile loop from the Douglas Springs trail head at the east end of Speedway.
Returning on Wildhorse trail I spotted green scattered in the sand of this heavily used trail. The green wasn't lettuce -- or cactus -- or "road apples". It was US paper money. Forty-three dollars worth.
Just a few feet further down the trail was an electronic room key from nearby Tanque Verde Ranch. Oh the turmoil. Since I was on the trail quite early, the loss may have happened on a sunset horse back ride the previous day.
From past experience I knew that the desk clerks would not be able to identify the room from the card. Regardless, I drove over to the Tanque Verde Ranch and went into the office. I told the two receptionists -- Alix and another gal -- about the card that I had found. They confirmed that they could not tell which room it belonged to. I said that I would like to be able to return to the owner the rest of what was found -- the cash.
After a few more words, I left the cash and a phone number. If anyone came to collect a new room key and mentioned the loss of cash it could be claimed.
I felt good about the decision -- for about a half hour.
I made up stories how this cash would end up being just another lost and found item. The desk clerks would have divided the money after no one had claimed it.
How wrong I was. When I turned on my cell phone this morning there was a message from Alix at Tanque Verde Ranch saying no one had claimed the cash so I could come by to pick it up.
When I arrived, Alix was there behind the desk. She retrieved the money and as she gave it to me, I pulled out a monetary reward and graciously thanked her.
The experience made my day. I hope it did the same for Alix.