Vacation, money and freedom

I’m a big fan of real money

Simply, notes and coins. Yesyes, I hear you thinking, but it is certainly not the only reason. It is mainly because it keeps you autonomous and independent of banks.

We’re living in Portugal, and all shop owners are grateful if you take change with you.

The other reason is a very practical: such a little machine through which you slip your card and pay, will cost 600 euros a year in rent, and even then they charge per action to the owner and the user of that thing. Fat chance – too greedy, Mr C.E.O. Bankmanager!

That’s why I like to stay away from banks and stay as independent as possible.

For a small business owner it means freedom

At the end of the season, I find it very satisfying to close the doors, open the safe and count what’s in there. Make stacks, like you did as a child when you played Monopoly.

Making those stacks is not reason number 1 why I do this. Reason number 1 is always enjoying the space and freedom, which I like to share with nice people.

But let’s be realistic: a person must have money or you do not survive

Without any, you can start looking for a good cardboard box.

Where do our stacks come from? Of course from you, our highly esteemed guests. You undoubtedly have been sitting on the table with your stacks, whilst planning your holiday. Whether the stacks were real or virtual.

We don’t have millionaires as guests who needn’t pay attention to anything. The bulk of our audience consists of two-income households who live a good life but can’t throw money at everything they see.

Many self-employed, teachers, artists, service providers of all kinds.

Some portuguese café guests even have to count their coins as they come to drink a Duvel. Very expensive beer for them: 3 euros each (but you sacrifice something if you can drink foreign beer from such a kinky glass!)

Maybe it’s because I grew up in a not-so-rich family

My mother had jars for everything. A system that has proved its value, I think.

Another advantage for me: I am a very visual person, and bank statements are too abstract to me. If I’d pay everything with plastic, I would be completely lost in no time.

My accountant has accepted my a-monetism *.

So, no paying with plastic

Many guests apologize when they come to settle their accounts at the end of their stay with stacks of banknotes of 20 and 10 euros. That’s okay though, I’m used to it. It is a service of the banks. As long as I remember, change has been a problem here, especially in little shops. Like this, it’s easier.

I always bring a bunch of coins if I go to the market on sundaymornings. The senhoras with their small market stalls can’t change notes of 20, let alone 50. When you pay with a banknote, they will be out of cash flow immediately.

So, let it flow! But please, in small bank notes and coins!

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* a typical form of financial logic, might be female (not scientifically proven)