It’s a sign, perhaps, that I ought to get out more, but I was ridiculously excited to get my hands on one of these. It wasn’t even in my change – it was the other half’s and he only noticed it when the lady in the Notso Bigtown shop rejected it because it looked ‘a bit foreign.’ We gave her a nice old-fashioned penny instead, and I hung on to the shiny new one.
These were announced at the beginning of April but coins last forever, and besides we’re a long way from the Royal Mint up here, so changeover has been slow. Even so, I’ve been hopefully checking all the coins in my change ever since to see if I can see one in the flesh, as it were.* And finally one has made it all the way to the middle of nowhere and into my pocket. Or rather, not my pocket because I don’t want to spend it by accident. No doubt in a year or so’s time – or down in London already – they’ll be commonplace. But for now they’re a bit of a novelty.
I really like them. I like the idea, I like the fact that they look modern but still have a touch of the traditional about them. I think the design is clean, and fresh and very stylish and above all completely unlike our normal British coins, except for the head of Brenda on the other side. In short, the woman in the shop was right – they do look a bit foreign, after all.
*I’m also the sad sort of bastard who examines all her euro coins on the continent to see which country they come from and – come to think of it – I used to get a kick out the fact that every can of coke you bought in London seemed to come from a different country. It gives it that touch of authenticity, I find, when your Greek Cypriot greasy spoon makes the effort to source the Cokes from Greece as well…