To learn to be curious you begin with with noticing something relatively easy, like the feel of the air on your face, or your breath, or your weight into the ground, or the sounds in the room. Just pick one and see if you can sink into it, with the luxury of knowing that for this moment that's all that's asked of you. Do that as long as you like.
But rivers like the one you lost your coin in can be wild. We are, all of us, full of rage and guilt and desire and grief as well as boredom and irritation and a rampant need to plan everything. Sometimes that's all we find when we pay attention. There's the sense that "surely this can't be it" but when we open ourselves to the possibility that the treasure is to be found right here, surprising things happen. A student who was always terrified of getting lost noticed that when he brought to mind the coin "lost in the river" koan he suddenly realized he could never be lost. How would he lose himself? Obviously he would always be there. It all became funny and whenever he would notice that fear rising in him, he would laugh.
The skill this week is to use attention and a koan when something is happening in your mind that seems impenetrable, something that makes you think, "This is terrible and must never happen again!" At that moment notice a physical sensation, a touch or a sound or a breath and bring the koan to mind, "The coin that's lost in the river is found in the river." See what happens to the impenetrable thought or feeling, whether it opens a little bit.
More next time on how koans work.