Skip to the last paragraph if you want the short version.
In a previous entry I had mentioned passing on P125 to go after several other notes that I had open slots for in my sets. A few days after that journal entry an auction pops up with 5 Ukrainian specimen banknotes in it, ok, now we're talking. Now I'm feeling even better about my choice to pass on the P125, a few specimen notes would look great in my collection. The auction was for seven days and would end end around 3:30 in the afternoon EST, perfect. The auction ending during the day gives me the opportunity to pounce on these babies with some snipe bids, POP, POP, POP, POP, POP. I get all five of them for roughly half the price of the P125, sweet! In the meantime, while this auction was going on ten more specimen notes go up for sale from another seller. Now, still with half of my funds left, I focus my attention to these specimens. These notes were up for sale from an ebay seller I frequent but the starting price was a little high for my blood, especially after getting the five for a reasonable price. Some of the specimens were more coveted notes and carry a higher premium than the others, that being said I waited and let the auctions end. There were three that I was really hoping wouldn't sell and I wouldn't know until the next morning. Well, one of the three I was watching sold, in fact it was the only note of the ten to sell. Knowing this sellers habits, I wait for them to repost the notes with BIN pricing, they did right on schedule. They had the BIN price the same as the starting auction price, which is typical of this seller. That being said, the two notes I was watching were there and I decided to snap them up. The price was a little high but with others watching I didn't want to wait it out hoping the seller would drop the price and they had a P115, a note I've been waiting on for quite awhile, combining the shipping on all three helped save a few bucks. Nice, I turned the money for the P125 into seven specimen notes and a P115, now all I have to do is wait for them to arrive in the mail. The first five were coming from Greece the other three from Thailand. As is typical, the notes from Thailand arrived in about 5 days. I don't know if this seller has a private jet or what but notes I get from them always arrive supper fast. All that's left is to wait for the notes from Greece, waiting, waiting, waiting...
Ok, in the mean time I'm getting PMG to place the two specimens I received into slots in my sets. Well, upon further review PMG felt it prudent to create three new registry sets specifically for specimens and change the existing sets to issued notes only. I was surprised by this decision, pleasantly so, I had anticipated that PMG would grant my request and plug the notes into existing sets or I would be given the dreaded response "these notes are more suitable for a Signature Set". Apparently the amount graded justified the specimen sets, sweet, I'm going to have to request a replacement set for the 2nd series coupons now. I'll probably wait on requesting "tweaks" to the existing registry sets and new sets until after the new year, I'm going to try and focus on updating descriptions and my signature sets for the next few months.
Finally, the specimens from Greece arrived a full 38 days after I purchased them, I don't mind saying that I was sweating the first 35 because the tracking info said they were still sitting in Athens with no anticipated delivery date. Anyway, WHEW, they made it safe and sound and are now placed in my registry set. I'm very happy with the decision to wait on the P125 and acquire these notes, patience for the moment seems to have paid off.
Here's the eye candy, the notes from the Greek auction have the older generation holders. I had seen these notes before (the notes from Greece) as they were up for auction by A. Karamitsos https://www.karamitsos.com/auction.php?id=644&page=15&chapter=00000&keyword=Search&sort=0&type=-&view=all (they are towards the bottom of the page) an affiliate of PMG/CCG. There were seven lots of Ukrainian specimen notes the starting price was 90 Euros, I thought that was a little steep so I passed, this was in early September. These same notes later popped up from a different Greek seller (different name anyway) on ebay with a starting bid of $.99, in the end I was able to win the notes for between $50 -$77 USD each.
Just passed on another specimen up for auction, it went unsold auction started at $80.