Chennai: If you step into Samy Durai’s shop on Arcot Road, Vadapalani you are greeted with ancient artifacts. Two large gramophones are placed at the entrance along with a tall telescope that looks as if it’s out of an encyclopedia. Samy’s small store is filled with interesting objects from idols to coins and from tiny toys to old pots and clocks. All his collections come with a story of their own.
Hailing from Thirunelveli, Samy from a young age was always passionate about collecting coins. “This hobby came to me naturally,” he recalls while speaking to News Today.
“I saved several coins and denominations of early Indian notes. I received some from my friends and rest collected during my travel across the State,” he says.
Just like his shop, Samy’s house is filled with several artifacts. “Whenever I go out to shop and research, I end up buying whatever I find attractive,” he says and adds that “I sell some objects as cheap as Rs 5.”
On collecting coins, he says, “It increases our knowledge on history. If you have a coin of the Chola era, you get to understand the era if you do more research. Each kingdom had its own identifications and markings. It helps you to distinguish which place they belong to. A country that has high denomination generally tend to have a weak economy.”
Samy says some of his coin collection has been displayed at many schools in Vadapalani. “It is nice to see that children show passion. Having a hobby is very important as it instills a person with creativity and knowledge,” he says.