There’s a group of girls living near us, aged I’d say between eight or nine and maybe twelve.
They like to bring our mutt Penny for a walk every day when it’s fine.
And so Connie gives them a few euro every now and then.
The other day when they came, Connie didn’t have change and so asked the oldest girl: “Is it ok if I give you a few bob on Friday?”
She looked bewildered.
“Do you know what a few bob is?”
She hadn’t a notion.
I’d bet a penny to a pound that her parents were born long after decimalisation.
Which, of course, means they’d look at you as if you’d two heads if you said “a penny for your thoughts” or that your new car could “turn on a sixpence.”
I wonder what they think the prize used to be in the 2000 Guineas classic horse race.
And what do the scouts do now if they don’t do Bob a Job. (I remember slaving all afternoon the garden of a very big house on Eglinton Road during Bob a Job week. Thought I had it made for the week. And after four hours, the woman of the house gave a bob. One miserable shilling.)
Do people you don’t like still turn up like a bad penny?
Here’s another thing.
I wonder what answer I’d get if I asked my daughter was two and six was? She’d probably say “eight.”
Well, I could write it down then as 2/6 and ask her was it was. And she might say “one third.”
“No,” I would reply. “It’s actually 30. 12d plus 12d plus 6d.”
“Eh what are you on about dad?”
“The old currency was Pounds, Shillings and Pence. LSD.”
“Eh Pounds with a P, shillings with an S and pence with a P and you’re calling it LSD? Will I call the doctor?”
“For God’s sake,” I would say. “Penny was abbreviated to ‘d’ from denarius, th Latin for penny. S was from solidus, for shilling, and l from libra, or pound.”
She would then stare at me.
And, if she knew the history of our currency, probably tell me I wasn’t the full shilling.
She doesn’t know anything about our old monetary ways.
So she’d probably just call me nuts.