Foreign News: Rate of Exchange

The streetcar clanked slowly along Munich's long, steep Tegernseer Landstrasse. Inside, behind the plywood which replaced the car's bomb-shattered windows, it was dark. The conductor was collecting fares. One woman fumbled in her handbag for a 50-pfennig piece, dropped it on the floor as the car shook.

The coin was worth 5¢. But to the ordinary German, still living under strict wage and price controls, 50 pfennig is still 50 pfennig. The woman bent down, and in the darkness groped for the lost coin. She could not find it. The conductor could not find it either. Then a Polish soldier came over...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!