It's Saturday morning in Half Moon Bay. I'm cruising a few garage sales with my son, who is almost 10 years old. This being Half Moon Bay, the weather is foggy and cool. Everything you touch is damp.
At one driveway I linger checking out a stereo receiver, but eventually I pass. Now where's my son?
I find him at a table of garbage: common rocks, used nails, rusty cans, scraps of chain. An old guy with stubble beard and wool cap is watching my son's every move.
The boy fingers each item, frowning, pondering, curious. The old man's face reacts to each touch. The boy fondles a bedspring; the old man smiles. The boy rattles a coffee can filled with screws; the old man listens. The boy disdainfully drops a dirty hinge; the old man flinches.
Like everyone else at the sale I gave the offerings only a glance -- but my son and the old guy are on exactly the same wavelength.