For our prompt of “Coins” today, I opted for a single euro coin, as I think they’re rather lovely. Each time Philippe and I return from visiting family in France each year, we always end up with a handful of coins that we neglected to spend before leaving. These are placed in a tray and we always say we’ll take them back with us the next year, but then we always forget. So, we’ve amassed quite a collection by this point. Though, sure, it’s just a bit of currency, it also has so much sentimental value. It’s the currency I returned home with when I was coming back from France alone, having just visited Philippe. As it turns out, a single coin can hold so much more value than what’s printed on the front. This was years ago, now, but it still brings back those early memories. And, when we now thankfully always return from France together, we still leave family behind each time we go. So these coins have become a shiny little reminder of love. A small souvenir of beautiful moments past and the exquisite hope of precious moments to come.

Today was a rather rainy day here, and we spent part of it at the theatre watching Cat On A Hot Tin Roof. Then, in our usual inexplicable fashion, we came home and watched the show The Masked Singer. This is a show were celebrities perform in costume while the audience and a panel of other celebrities try to guess who it is. Unlike the former, this show won’t win a Pulitzer Prize, but it’s super fun to watch and any show with music always gets our vote. And we were able to guess a couple of the stars so far, so it’s been a fun evening! For Philippe and I, music has always been a major part of our relationship. Even though, years ago, I was returning home from France alone with only a few euros in my pocket, I was listening to the playlist that Philippe had made for me. It was an eclectic mix of all types of music in both English and French. I still have it and listen to it occasionally today. Of course, the songs mean something quite different now, but they never fail to touch my heart. That’s the beautiful thing about music. It’s a thousand emotions bundled together and the ones that rise to the surface simply depend on the place and time.

There are so many things in life that money can’t buy. Even the things that money makes possible like a trip or vacation are only made truly special by the moments and the people we share them with. So, today, I feel quite lucky to have all of my memories and so excited for the ones I’ve yet to make. There’s no way to predict the future, but it’s a comfort to know that there are still lots of lovely little memories heading my way. I’m thrilled to have my little family at home and even more happy to know that I’ll be back with my extended family in the near future. When it comes to the things I truly value in life, there’s a very short list indeed. It doesn’t take much at all to be happy in this life if one has a positive outlook. I’ve always had this, and still feel that life will always deliver something beautiful no matter what setbacks might come my way. And so, today, you’ll often find me taking a moment to relive old memories. Whether it’s a glimpse of my childhood, or a more recent history, where I suddenly find myself happily collecting coins.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Gold Ochre, Terra Cotta,  and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
Euro Coin Watercolor Illustration Sketchbook Detail

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26 thoughts on “Collecting Coins

  1. Music is indeed a way we keep memories. Even people with dementia, who remember so little, will remember words or things that happened when they heard certain music. One of the strongest memories I have of my mother is centered on Frank IFields version of ‘I remember you’. I think I was about 10 and had walked home during a deluge and was soaked to the skin. She had a fire in the fireplace and hot cocoa waiting and the song happened to be on the radio. There was a break in the rain and the sun broke through the clouds and through the window as it was playing. I truly don’t know if I like the song but it has tremendous meaning for me.

  2. It’s so true that plain old pocket change from a trip abroad can hold so many memories. My daughter spent three months in Strasbourg as an exchange student in the ’80’s and came home with a pocket full of French, Belgian and Swiss coins which she gave to me to hold. I added them to the several national denominations I came home with from a two year tour in the Med courtesy of the Navy in 1968. My dad gave me some coins which he picked up in the Marines in WW2, along with some Russian coins his dad picked up during and after WW1 in the Army’s Polar Bear Expedition against the Bolsheviks in 1918-20. I also will add the Walking Liberty half dollar that I have carried for 40 years in my banking career, plus a few Roman bronze pieces from the Constantinian era.
    One grandson is interested in coins and guess who will get this hoard! He knows and appreciates all the stories that go along with the pieces – there is about $5 worth of coinage but so many stories, that Andrew will certainly feel rich!

  3. Aww! That’s awesome. I was working at a gas station when I was in high school and a young boy came in to buy something. He paid me with these incredibly beautiful unused coins. I suspected he stole them from his father’s coin collection. But who knows, it may have been his own collection. After he left I bought the coins from the register and took them home to my dad who bought them from me. Dad didn’t have a real collection, he just liked to save things he found interesting. When he died there was a whole safe deposit box of interesting coins that were worth mostly face value. Lol I think I still have some in a can somewhere.

  4. Beautiful painting of the elegant Euro! I still have European coins from my after-college trip in 1972. Back then, things were more interesting – there were lira and francs and many more from the individual European countries. They do remind me of wonderful memories from that time.

  5. I love it when some small little item evokes many wonderful memories. I may not remember what I did yesterday, but I can see a trinket in my house and go back in time to revisit that moment. I’ve never seen an Euro coin before, but because of your little sketch, I now know what they look like. 🙂

  6. Wonderful rendering of the Euro and wonderful memories too! I recently found a little coin purse with Euros left over from my trip to France and just seeing it brought back so many wonderful memories!!!

  7. I love this lovely coin, Charlie. As usual, I always read your story with my excited. Yeah, the coin is priceless. We have never known how many times using it buying the tickets going into our valuable memories. 🌹

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