Lonely Planet Guide To Goyle – Part 4

FACTS FOR THE VISITOR

Visas

There are no official visa requirements as such but there is some benefit to be had from going and getting your passport stamped by an officer of the Goylish military. But only if you keep it in your jacket pocket at the time, in which case he will be delighted to stamp on it repeatedly. He will then issue you with a certificate testifying to the fact that you are a species willing to be crushed underfoot without offering the slightest resistance. Which, let’s face it, won’t be far from the truth. You can then show this to Goyles on your visit and they will probably allow you to go on your way unmolested, although some may wish to test the document’s veracity with their own boots.

Customs

Pretty much anything that might be of use or value to a Goyle is contraband and subject to confiscation by whichever Goylish ‘official’ stops you first. The best advice is to travel light where possible, to disguise your possessions in some way as to make them look worthless or undesirable and never wear too innocent a smile when encountering Goylish ‘officials’. The last thing you want to arouse is their suspicion. Actually that’s the second to last thing you want to arouse, but the subject of Goylish females lies outside the remit of this volume.

Money

Money is a tricky issue on Goyle, in part because each Goylish nation or reality has its own official unit of currency, all of them called the sharn. The coins themselves, no matter what the denomination, come in all shapes and sizes but are invariably furnished with viciously spiked edges and resemble shuriken, or Japanese throwing stars. This can render a simple game of coin-tossing lethal, but many Goyles do enjoy calling whether it will embed itself in the head, tail or some other part of the target.

Given that no Goylish nation recognises another, no distinction is made between different types of sharn – there’s no reference to Visigoylish sharn, no Ostrogoylish sharn and so on, just sharn – but the exchange rate between nations can be furious and deadly if no other weapons are to hand. The exchange rate for visitors is another matter and usually amounts to roughly one sharn to all the cash and valuables you have on you, although it does depend on how good a shot the Goyle is. And sometimes he will recover his sharn too.

Really though if you are set on visiting Goyle, you are well advised to convert all your currency into Travellers’ Cheques ahead of your trip. And advertise the fact prominently, whether by wearing them about your person in clear plastic pockets or by use of a slogan on your T-shirt, front and back. Travellers’ Cheques are for the most part entirely useless to Goyles and will make you a lot safer, allowing you to move about largely free from the threat of mugging.

However, their uselessness does present other difficulties in the area of spending and making purchases. Your challenge there lies in convincing the vendor that the Cheques can eventually be put to good use as cash – traded in – off-world. The only ships off-world are military vessels (see Getting There & Away) and the same applies for locals. So, since any Goyle you meet in the retail sector or service industry will be ex-military, retired, this will involve them having to re-enlist. Many will not be averse to the notion of another tour of duty, but often the military is less keen to have its cast-offs returned, unless in times of heavy conflict when extra cannon-fodder might come in handy. In your favour as has been mentioned, most Goyles are incredibly stupid and if you cannot con one into accepting Travellers’ Cheques you really aren’t deserving of the label ‘sentient’. Against that, there is the question of how smart you are to have ventured to Goyle in the first place.

Assuming you manage to return from Goyle (see Getting There & Away) it’s not impossible that you may have picked up some hard local currency during your stay and you will doubtless wish to offload it, since there is no way in your right mind you will ever consider going back. Banks and foreign exchanges will take the coins off your hands for nothing, but only as part of a legal obligation to discourage travellers from carrying concealed weapons. You’re really better off just donating any spare Goylish coins to the charity of your choice. They’re worth nothing to charities either, but if you can slip it into the collection box with a touch of sleight of hand the collector will never notice and you will have the satisfaction of having looked good in their eyes.

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