The society tends to discredit the value of coins nowadays. This is because, aside from a little amount inherited to coins, it is regarded as “weighty” and “hassle” to carry. This makes coins usually left at home – scattered on top of the refrigerator, ignored inside the table drawers, placed behind figurines, leaved everywhere, collecting dusts, disregarded and forgotten.
Coins are meant to be used in an ordinary, everyday transactions. It is best use in purchasing lower-priced goods. It can also be used as for change (panukli) and for charity-giving.
Normally, a five-hundred-peso or even any higher denomination cannot be completed (as a whole) in the absence of even a single one-peso-coin. Like the story of my neighborhood Mommy Marta which turns back home to get extra money to pay her electric bill in a walking distance establishment when she unknowingly dropped and lost her one-peso coin.
In our “kwentuhan,” he said – a single one-peso coin had saved his dignity from an unexpected shame.
He used to bring an exact amount of money for his tranpo-fare going to office and back home in the afternoon.
One afternoon, as Mr. Cruz travels his way home, he picked his 12-peso coin in his pocket, his usual fare, (during the time this article was written) to pay his last vehicle ride – the LRT (Light Rail Transit). He was so tired (that afternoon) and eventually falls asleep inside the train.
Suddenly, Mr. Cruz goes beyond his 12-peso fare resulting to rejection of his ticket in the exit facilities of the train. Mr. Cruz has remaining two-peso-coin in his pocket. However, the ticket attendant asked him another peso to complete his fifteen-peso-fare. Mr. Cruz has no more coin. He checked his pocket and searched his bag but found none.
He looked back to find somebody to ask for help however, he was held by his pride. Mr. Cruz feels ashamed as he sees an approximately five people aligned behind him. He was blushing and wet by his own uncontrolled big sweats.
“One more peso please” the ticket attendant asked him again. Mr. Cruz shamefully jumbled his bag to search once more but still found nothing. “I know everyone was staring at me and feel terribly ashamed of myself”, Mr. Cruz said as he cheerfully share to me his experience.
As he closes his eyes, thinking of his next act to ask one peso to the person behind him, his nerves shakes and his knees fells into weakness. However, when he opened his eyes, he sees a rusty one peso coin at the floor corner, forgotten and full of dust. He quickly picked it up, scrubbed on his pants and immediately pays his shameful one peso fare.
“The incident only reveals how valuable a coin is, and able to save anyone from certain and unexpected shame” my friend said. With that I would like to share this story to encourage everybody to give coin special regard, to bring the coins back to the circulation rather than spoiling them at home, because its value is more than just a coin. (Edmon B. Agron)