Re: “You return $10,000 found on Issaquah road: Your reward?” [April 12, Local]: A man finds $10,000 and a wallet on the road. He returns them to the owner. The owner gives him a jar of homemade applesauce “made with love and care” in return. Is the reward too stingy? Shouldn’t it be a big chunk of money? That misses the point. And it may mock the giver.

Homemade applesauce is the hardest fruit to can. An apple tree is tended, or a box of the best apples bought at the right time of year. The kitchen is set up, the jars scalded, apples peeled and cored, a family recipe followed. The jars are filled, processed, and stored for winter. You cannot find the taste of homemade applesauce in a grocery store.

The man then offers home-smoked salmon, lawn-mowing and homemade blackberry jam, one family to another. I don’t smoke salmon, but I know the effort it takes to pick blackberries and make jam.

A money reward may seem grander. But a gift of homemade sweets and fish has the power to change the future. The two neighbors will have a story to tell, and another person to trust and wave to, next time they cross paths in their community. That’s priceless.

Jeannine Daigle Moore, Seattle