In this series:
I'm in the middle of a 40-day, 16 stop, 14 country tour of the world. The most annoying thing about this trip so far has been using currency.
Carrying cash does not make me feel powerful. Carrying cash makes me feel vulnerable, like a target. Carrying cash makes me feel tied down, nervous about keeping track of what I've got on me.
Without cash, I can walk unafraid into bad neighborhoods and dark alleys. Without cash, I can approach strangers with open hands. Without cash, I have a ready and honest answer to all who ask for money.
With cash, I am likely to spend more. With cash, I can negotiate for a low price, but must then face the awkwardness of asking for change. With cash, I am more likely to miscalculate, make rounding errors, or accidentally drop too much. With cash, I am always worrying about whether my bills are too large, too small, or too few.
With cash, I am a slave to the whims of paper, moisture, and rips and tears. Without cash, I feel free.
around the world in 40 days: