play money…

I went back to Woolworth’s today, not because I couldn’t stay away, but because I forgot a few things… and I wanted to go somewhere while it was still daylight. I wasn’t there all that long, and it was dark when I left. There are a few other shops in next to Woolworth’s, though I’d been told most of them would close at 5pm. One or two little ones were still open, and I went in to have a look. I asked a girl behind the counter what time they closed, and she was leaning over, trying to get something, so she didn’t realize I was a customer. She said, “What?” to my question, and when she saw it was a customer, she was very apologetic. I laughed, because I didn’t think she’d said it in an obnoxious way, but I know full well how I sometimes say “What?” to my friends.

While there, I picked up some Emerald postcards, so please give me a chance to find the post office, and I’ll mail some of those. Be patient, my friends. And received fifty cents change, which is one coin, that I really wanted to stop and gape at, it was so cool looking. But then I spent it at Woolie’s, because it’s real money, not Monopoly money!

Wandering around Woolie’s again, I noticed other randomly interesting things, like instead of a Customer Service desk, they have a booth labeled “Customer Enquiries”. I can even hear in my head how they pronounce it, because we spell it “inquiries”, and say it completely different. While down one of the snack aisles, I saw a bag of chocolate covered “scorched almonds”. Don’t they toast them, Down Under? Do they taste different, when scorched? How scorched is scorched? Images of blow torches and scorching the ironing comes to mind.

I had to get some “liquorice”, just to see what it was like. Now, looking again, I really thought I got the licorice that was spelled different. Now it probably won’t taste any different either.   : )    I was also afraid to get anything chocolate, because I might just eat it all. I’ve eaten way too much chocolate this week.  And clothes pins, because we needed some more to hang the laundry. They just call them “pins”, down here, and perhaps even laundry pins. I thought it was way different, and then realized we actually DO use the word “pins”, but we tend to run them together as one word… “clothespins”. By the way, the licorice is really good.

Up to the register, and I handed over several pieces of my play money. I got some Australian money before I even left the U.S., and was both fascinated and weirded out by it. The bills are of all different colors and different lengths. And kind of plastic-y. And now, I had some totally neat coins, and I could actually spend them, instead of saving them to gape over. I was very grateful that the numbers are printed large on them, so I didn’t have to sit there waffling over my loose change until the cashier begged for mercy.

When I got home, I took a look at my remaining coins. I’m not sure what the 10 cent coin’s image is, but the dollar coins are thicker and more interesting. There’s a 1 dollar coin and a 2 dollar coin, both of which are thicker than the others. Pictures of Queen Elizabeth II are on the front sides of them, of course. On the back of the 1 dollar coin, are several kangaroos. At first glance, I thought the 2 dollar coin had a picture of Father Time, but it’s an Aboriginal man, with several stars in the sky… perhaps the Southern Cross? And to the right of the 2, I think there’s a little image to symbolize the bush.

Coins can be so much fun, but these are to spend. If I save any, it’ll be right before I leave to go home… next year.

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