If the value of the three paisa coin has appreciated, then I am perhaps responsible for the fortunes of another girl 😀
I loved collecting coins as a kid. I’m not sure when and how it began. Perhaps it was the discovery of a small bag of coins at home, or a few foreign ones left behind by visiting relatives. At first, it was restricted to ten paisa coins and cents – we had an abundant supply of them.
As word spread of my interest in coins, friends and family members, who had been travelling abroad, generously donated currency. I was even given a coin album. It had clear plastic sheets with small pockets to store individual coins. I arranged my coins and added small notes about the country, year, and the symbol and slogans on the coins.
I had big plans! I thought the collection would grow very large. So using my foresight, I made an index of the countries and currencies to manage the treasure.
I even began keeping coins and notes, which were still in use – I was a ten-year old, and I was already investing in currency!
Even as different countries resided within my book, I discovered coins in my own home – one, two, and three paisa coins. I had only one one-paisa coin. But I was more delighted with the three paisa coins. Three was an unusual denomination for a coin, and I took pride in owning two of them!
I spent nothing, and yet owned a lot. My successful collection, soon got to my head. I boasted about the large variety of coins I possessed – far more than I should have. Once, I even took some coins to school, as proof. And that’s when it happened.
A classmate of mine was very impressed with my coins. She asked, in the nicest possible way, ‘Can I take one of these?’
And like a fool, I gave it to her. To this day, I regret that action. I could have traded it for something else – but no! I had to act magnanimous. That’s what happens when you allow ten-year olds to handle so much money!
A few years later, deep within the depths of my eldest aunt’s huge cupboard, I uncovered a gem – the 1 pice coin. It was older than the Indian democracy, and it had a hole in it! Nothing could have been better than that.
I’m sure there are lots of people who collect coins – and would buy old coins like the one with the hole. In old Delhi, I found coin sellers selling such antique coins on the pavement. The realisation, that the coins I had, were all gifted to me, made me feel great. But my coin collecting days were numbered.
The European Union was formed, and I grew up. The album was relegated to the cupboard, and my collection, nothing more than a lost memory.
A chance discovery of some coins in a piggy bank made me pull out my album, and I found that my foresight was rather too great. I had one, two, and five rupee coins and notes stashed up inside – which I could still use today! Time to add the ten rupee coins I suppose 😀