Growing up overseas, it was always fun to check out the local currency when we traveled. In grade school, I amassed a small hoard of European coins from our trips. There were Francs from France and Marks and Pfennigs from Germany (then called West Germany) and a smattering of other metal chips.

Back stateside, it was Pesos from Mexico and Canadian coins.

So it was refreshing this year when my nephew indicated he was interested in collecting coins. We went to the local coin shop and snagged a handful of foreign coins. By the end of the week, my son caught the bug and we made another trip to the store.

We found some Shillings and pieces from Hong Kong, Australia and the Caribbean.

It’s interesting to see what other nations hold significant to warrant placement on money — starfish, mythical figures depicting authority, flowers, squirrels, even a platypus.