When I entered young adult hood I began to travel with a passion. This passion was primarily fuelled on by the currency I had seen as a child. When friend of the family, or family members travelled they used to bring me back anything from a few coins to small stacks of paper currency from the country they had visited. By the time I was eight years old, I had a notebook filled with different money from peoples travels and shoe box full of coins. The notebook was of course arranged based on how attractive I found the money and not country or value. I remember playing with a 5000 lire bill (about $3.51) and trying to convince my young friends that it was better then a $100 dollar bill. Some of them believed me! Another brief story of my young “collecting” days was when we could get 3 coins out of a box at the one comic book store for a dollar, my one cousin and I would argue over who got the “coolest” ones. One day, we had selected a coin that had a nude woman on the front – only to have out aunt snatch it away and scold us for our miss behaviour. Once I entered my teens I never fully lost interest in this money, but it was relegated to under the bed and mostly forgotten except when I was forced to clean. However, as I grew older I started to realize the true cool factor of this foreign money. Now, as I have travelled I’ve actually on occasion spent some of the money I’ve horded (obviously, I still have that 5000 lire bill as it is now obsolete) but I still reminiscence and wonder if I would have had such a desire to travel if it wasn’t for this currency.
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