Our youngest is attending Hidden Valley Scout Camp for two weeks. http://nhscouting.org/camps/hidden-valley-scout-camp/  We’re going to pick him up tomorrow and stay in a motel overnight then truck him back over Sunday for his second week.

I’m eyeing at an envelope I need to remember to bring to him.

While in Philadelphia with his Boy Scout troop last month, Sam lost a tooth. We didn’t know that until we picked him up from Valley Forge and headed down to Washington D.C. to visit with a dear friend and see the sites. Somewhere along the way Sam pulled out the tri-fold ten-dollar bill.

“Where’d you get that?” I asked. He had taken his own money but spent it. I was struck by the enshrined quality of this one.

“Well, my tooth fell out the second day. One of my troop mates (No, Sam did not say ‘troop mates’; he named the boy, but I won’t here) handed it to me and said, “Here – from the Tooth fairy.” He and Sam know each other but are not close.

Right away I thought, ‘Wow, what a precious soul in that teenage boy to offer up his own spending money for such a tender cause.’ (His tooth fairy must have been far more generous than Sam’s when he was in his young tooth-loss moneymaking era. It had been quite a while since the tooth fairy last visited.)

Obviously, Sam accepted.

Now I understood why the bill was unspent. Our son has an avid opportunist streak – a strong, scheming inner financier ever at his beck and call. But he also has (we pray) an ever emerging conscience.

“How nice is that, Sam? (Pause) But you know you have to give it back.”

“I know,” he said, reluctantly zipping the bill back into the small pocket in the top of his backpack.

Hence the envelope with the triad-fold bill in it. This Sunday Sam’s troop – including his ‘Tooth fairy friend’ –  are joining him at camp