The View From 32


JULY 18, 2007   More below: BEACH SCENE


Shopping for rubles

A weird sort of shopping list, but to get ready for our trip to Finland, St. Petersburg and London I had to make a trip to the money store. In Cleveland it's not that easy to find foreign currency, Russian rubles in particular. So as I've done in other years I headed downtown to Currency Today in the Halle Building.

Walking out the door after writing a check for $1000 US, I felt pretty rich with a thick wad of rubles, but a lot less rich in Euros and British pounds. When we visited London three years ago, a pound cost about $1.60 US. Now it's $2.16! Euros used to go for around $1.25, but now they are $1.47.

I'd planned to show a sample bill from each country here to show how beautiful foreign bills are compared to U.S. greenbacks, but when I tried scanning them with Photoshop, much to my surprise this popped up:

On a hunch I put the 1000 ruble note on the scanner by itself; I figured the Russians weren't as high-tech with their currency as the EU and the UK. No problem with the scan, so here's a detail of that bill:

So what to make of all this? I like the advice the woman from Currency Today gave me as I turned to leave: "Don't worry about it—it's only money."


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Beach scene

Late in the afternoon at Edgewater beach it was threatening to rain but the sun broke through from time to time. The beach sand was clean, neatly raked by a small self-propelled machine that seemed to do a better job than the larger one they used to pull behind a tractor. The enclosed air-conditioned cab is a lot easier on the driver, too.


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