Prior to September 2000 (aka The Move)
The quarter was tossed carelessly along with dimes, nickels, and pennies into the ceramic bowl for the kids to fight over before hopping their bikes to the local video store for ice-cream, candy, or a movie rental. It took up space in my pocket. It irritated me with it's weight and jangle when there was more than one.

Four months later
I now hoard them selfishly.
Eight quays translate to a half hour of peace from bickering children as they gleefully head over to the campground arcade.
Seven of those babies now mean one complete load of laundry washed and dried. Forty-nine are necessary for the entire week.
Six mean escape to the town center via public transportation system which in turn is equated with a chance at the library, mall browsing, people watching, or simply a ride to work.
Three of those treasured coins is equal to a large chocolate macadamia nut coffee. (If I manage to find a fourth I can make it with half mocha cappuccino, ah bliss in a cup!)
One coin means a newspaper and a connection to the world at large. (except Sundays when five are required)

The weight of quarters in my pocket is comforting. The jingle is music to my ears. They are life.

Pennies are tossed carelessly into a plastic tub in the drawer of our confined living quarters. The kids fight over those. Fifteen get them a lollipop at the camp store.

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