How many bills did the bank teller give Armando in "Fear" by Gabriela Mistral?

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"Fear" is a Mexican short story in which the protagonist, Armando Gonzalez, suffers from the psychologically debilitating effects of fear. He withdraws 50,000 pesos from a bank with which to buy a house for himself and his family, but throughout the story, he becomes increasingly afraid that somebody will steal the money from him.

Describing the bank teller who gives Armando his money, the narrator says that "the woman counted out the bills: '1000, 2000, 3000, 4000.'" Armando becomes increasingly anxious and wonders why she has to say "thousand" each time. He fidgets nervously while she finishes counting, "...48,000, 49,000, 50,000."

The teller counts in increments of one thousand, suggesting that she gives Armando fifty bills in total, each one for the value of 1000 pesos. This is confirmed later in the story, when the narrator says that Armando feels afraid because his dream of buying a house is "in a wad of fifty 1000 peso bills in the pocket of the worn-out pants he (is) wearing." He is afraid that his dream can be so easily taken away from him should someone try to steal those fifty bills from his pocket.

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