The story of this coin starts at work on a summer afternoon in Wisconsin. Working at various cell sites throughout the region, I occasionally have the opportunity to observe different kinds of wildlife. On one of those occasions, I heard what I though to be a hummingbird fly by my ear only to find that it was a large praying mantis.
Immediately, I had noticed that the praying mantis had landed on the chain link fence surrounding the cell site. I have seen praying mantis's before but this bug was huge measuring almost two links on the fence! I moved a little nearer to take a closer look and observed the big bug turn its head to look at me. Talk about creepy, just let a huge bug stare you down and see how you feel about it. At that point with cell phone in hand, I took several pictures of the big green monster.
Now fast forward a year or so to May 2015 and one of the most frightening experiences a young person can go through, meeting the parents of their boyfriend or girlfriend. In this case it was my son's girlfriend and we decided to meet the first time at a restaurant for my birthday. Whats more, breaking the ice for both parties is always a little awkward. Seeking to discover common points of interest, came the normal questions, what do you do, where did you go to school, where are you from, etc? Yet, I felt it was up to me to make her feel comfortable and at this point I wasn't making much progress.
In the course of the conversation I found out that my son's girlfriend had studied zoology in college and loves animals. I do not remember how the conversation turned to praying mantis's but when it had I showed her the cell phone pictures of the praying mantis I encountered at work. She was thrilled with my pictures and stated she had only dealt with immature, much smaller, praying mantis's. Immediately, the atmosphere of our restaurant date eased considerably. Since our conversation was two way, I had no problem telling her of my interest in numismatics.
That following Christmas, my son brought his girlfriend to our annual Christmas celebration at my mom's house. Present were my three sisters, my children, and many of my nieces and nephews along with the grand nieces and nephews. Since we have such a large extended family we have a custom of drawing one name from a hat to buy a gift valued at about $25 to exchange. My son's girlfriend decided to participate in our family custom for 2016 and drew none other than yours truly! I usually feel sorry for anyone that draws my name. Everyone knows I collect coins and there are very few things a person could buy for me valued at $25!
Because of the weather, my son couldn't make the celebration at my mom's house this year and we decided to meet at a restaurant to exchange gifts and make plans to see the movie "Rogue 1." At dinner my son's girlfriend gave me a small box. Inside was a 2012 Canadian $10 coin featuring you guessed it, a praying mantis! Immediately I made the connection and appreciated her thoughtfulness towards me.
For my part, I would have never bought this coin on my own and to tell the truth, I didn't even know it existed. In fact, my son's girlfriend searched e-bay for any coin featuring a praying mantis and only found this one. This then is what makes this a coin of great value, the idea and thought came long before the coin. I hope that you all had a blessed Christmas and I wish you all a very prosperous 2017.
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