Sunday, September 23, 2007

Isn't one enough?!

Learning a language can be a challenge. Anyone who has done so or attempted to do so will tell you. Along with learning the language is the specifics of learning numbers. Numbers are difficult indeed. Imagine a country where a gallon of milk will cost you 1530 colones. That's a big number, and it only goes up from there - imagine a grocery bill of 97,482 colones. Now that's a big number to hear in Spanish, then translate, then to try and figure out how much that is in dollars! Yikes! A person only likes to repeat themselves once or twice! On TOP of learning numbers, and money - Costa Rica uses many types of coins that are all the same value, but look very different. There are 3 types of 5 colones, 3 types of 10 colones, - all of which are the same value. Apparantly they are going to discontinue the large coins, and the bronze colored coins for the smaller value - and use the newest ones made of tin. But - they aren't taking any of the old ones out of circulation. They also use a 1 (imagine that - worth 1/5th of a penny!), 20, 25, 50, 100, and 500 - all in coins. Then they have bills of the following values: 1,000; 2,000; 5,000; and 10,000. They have other bills, but these are the ones we primarily use. That's a LOT of money! 12 different coins, and 4 bills. Sigh...

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