The pearl sat in a jewelry box for six years, until Mike Serino saw a similar one fetch nearly $40,000 at auction

By Alex Heigl
Updated February 24, 2015 06:40 AM

If you needed a reason to go out for lunch today, this is it.

Six years ago, Swampscott, Massachusetts, police officer Mike Serino found a lavender-colored pearl in a stew he ate at a Portuguese restaurant on his birthday. After nearly swallowing the rock, he took it home and left it in his daughter’s jewelry box.

That is, until recently, when he read a story about a pearl with similar coloring that went for nearly $40,000 at an auction.

“I told my wife, I said, ‘Where is that pearl? It’s valuable!’ ” Serino told CBS News.

The pearl is now up for auction through Kaminski Auctions in Beverly, Massachusetts. “It’s likely to bring $10-15,000, but being on the Internet with the whole world able to bid on it in real time, who knows,” Harry Morgan, vice president at Kaminski Auctions, told UPI.

Serino wants to buy a Corvette with the windfall, but his wife is jockeying for a new kitchen. Either way, he’s happy about the stroke of fortune, whatever it brings.

“It was a good seafood stew and it’s even more tasty now that I’ve got this pearl that’s worth thousands,” Serino said.