The map read, "X Marks the Spot," and so a group of adventurous twenty-somethings went looking for the spot. The coastline looked a bit like a corner of Italy, so they took a train down the boot and bribed the polizia into letting them dig. They dug through sand and rock, but they found only seawater. Years of intermittent research and real living later, one discovered the map looked remarkably like it edged on a lake in Maine. The group of now-thirty-somethings hopped the pond and trespassed into someone's woods. They dug through weeds and dirt, but they found only mud.
Over the years, they visited the Amazon, Lake Titicaca, and the Yangtze. Each time, they found nothing. Back at the hotel garden after another failed expedition, one of them ranted.
"We travel everywhere for this stupid map." She waved it about. "We spend thousands hunting, and we come away with nothing."
"Actually," said another, "it's kept us together and taken us around the world. Maybe that's the real treasure." Others nodded.
"Hmph!" The first threw the map to the ground and thrust her shovel through the X.
Clunk, came the sound of the shovel hitting buried wood. Everyone stared.