Thursday, June 23, 2016

Quixotic Changes

  So, I probably shouldn't tell anyone this, but stumbled on a humorous and odd little method of finding rare, foreign, spare, and basically free source of change. This is the change pocket on the lower face of those large change counting machines that are located in most modern grocery stores. You know the ones, those big green things that we use now to take the place of what once involved all of us poor kids siting around the kitchen table counting out pennies and pushing them into paper coin tubes with pencil erasers so we could afford to buy groceries and eat food. Well, the first incident involved me dumping a jar of loose change into one of these machines and looking down to find that someone else had left a great deal of coins in the change return pocket, and when I say a great deal of coins I mean like over ten dollars in change, one of which was a silver dime from 1947, a 1919 wheat penny and a handful of quarters from Bermuda. I just thought it was funny and I took it to the front desk, where I was told that this happens often and to go ahead and keep it. 
  I then ran into my friend Rueben, who I laughingly and a bit reluctantly told about my find, and who then excitedly informed me that he often searched the change pocket himself and that a few weeks earlier had retrieved a large handful of silver dollars dating back to the 1800's. Dear god, I thought, the machine rejects basically everything I spend hours digging in the dirt for. Since then, I make sure to casually wander by the change machine every time I shop, peeking discreetly into or running my fingers through the change rejection pocket, and usually coming up with something. Often, it's just a Canadian dime or a few beat up pennies but sometimes it is more and on occasion, it's a jackpot. Yesterday, there was just one coin, but one I had never seen, a gold colored 10 Euro cent piece with a great picture of the amazing Cervantes, author of "Don Quixote", one of the greatest and most timeless  pieces of literature ever written. I have been keeping track, and in the last month or so I have pulled over twenty dollars out of that one machine and the numbers continue to grow. No handful of 19th Century silver dollars yet, but it's gonna happen. I can feel it.