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Mathematically challenged

October 30, 2012

That first cash machine withdrawal in a country is always a tricky moment – fighting the desire to get out a regular twenty and stay safe with the knowledge that this could be your last sojourn with an ATM for a while.  Sri Lankan rupees are massively inflated. Not having a sense of what the exchange rate was, or even really the cost of anything, I got out 500 rupees; a good sturdy number, I thought, that would not embarrass my hosts should they see the note in my hand.  But on the contrary there was much giggling when I realised I had just withdrawn 2 pounds 50, enough for one simple lunch, once.  HSBC likely charged me double that for the privilege.

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