Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Gambling...In More Ways Than You Think

I haven’t been on a trip in years.  The boy is 19 years old and I haven’t been away from home without him since 1997.  Don’t get me wrong, I love the boy.  He pitches in, he’s relatively respectful, sometimes even nice to be around – he can be really funny sometimes.  And it’s not like he’s home all the time.  He works a full time job, a part time job, goes to the gym just about every day and has an active social life.  But…I haven’t been away on a grown up vacation in 17 years.  Enter my wonderful aunt, godmama and friend.  A couple months ago she asked me, out of the blue, if I’d be up for a little gambling trip.  Nothing extravagant, just a couple of hours north to one of the casinos here in Wisconsin.  Of course I emphatically and resoundingly said “YES!”  Reservations were made and the countdown began….and now it’s less than 24 hours…!!!!

So, I’m not a gambler.  My mom took me to the local bingo/casino for my birthday once, like 8 or 9 years ago.  She gifted me $100 and we set out toward the slots.  A couple hours later we left, no richer nor poorer than when we walked in.  It was an experience, I enjoyed playing and I even won enough on one pull of the arm to require security to stop by to refill the machine.  Of course, I fed it all back until I was only left with what I started with.  Previous experience aside, I am completely and totally excited to be going tomorrow.  I have saved and worked overtime to afford a bit to gamble with.  I joke that I have extremely high expectations of coming home rich.  I know better….I know the odds.  And that leaves me conflicted about the money I’ve saved.  A large part of my brain is saying that I have worked and saved this “extra” money and now I should do something responsible with it, like pay down the stupid hospital bill that I got as a going away present after my surgery last year.  Nah.  I just decided to let go, gamble with the bit I’ve saved and f*n have fun!

And that brings me to the second issue.  This will be the first time (except for when I was in the hospital a couple years ago) that the boy will have the house all to himself.  The house comes with specific responsibilities.  There’s the dog; her monthly heartworm and flea and tick treatments are due on Friday.  I have two diabetic cats that need daily insulin injections.  I’d also like to return home (wealthier) to a house in the same condition that I left it (or better, *hint, hint* if you're reading, boy).  Oh, he has already threatened to host a party to rival Project X….then burst out laughing and said, “By Project X, I mean, me, my girlfriend and a few of the guys, sitting around, probably playing Pokémon.”  First of all, yes, these 18 and 19 year old “men” still play Pokémon.  I guess it’s a generational thing, I try not to laugh too much about it, I don’t want to make him feel bad.  Hell, it could be so much worse, do you know what some 19 year olds do?  Second of all, these friends of his are pretty good kids (I have to eventually come to terms that they aren't really kids anymore, I mean, I saw a group pic of them on Facebook the other day and one of them has a full-on lumberjack beard).  I know he’s feeling weird about being home by himself.  He has plans to save up so he can move out some time next year (fingers crossed!) so, what better primer for that than a few days home without Mom.  I know I won’t be there to make sure he wakes up for work on Friday or to make him pizza (frozen) or a salad (literally opening the bag of salad mix, putting it on a plate, pouring on some French dressing and sprinkling on some shredded cheese) when he gets hungry.  I am confident that he will survive.  Besides, I have to see if I have raised someone who can actually be self-sufficient.  I know it’s only a few days…but it’s a good test, right?  At least that’s what I keep telling myself, over and over, in between the self-assurance that the house won’t be set aflame in my absence.

Well, this time tomorrow, I’ll be on my mini-vacay with my awesome aunt.  I agreed that I’ll even join her in having a cocktail (I don’t drink…like not even at a restaurant or on holidays or special occasions).  I did not, however, agree to have an additional drink for my friend…sorry, Linda, I have to draw the line somewhere (and don’t worry…I’ll stay clear of the Naval Room).

Wish me luck!


  1. It is okay, I knew you wouldn't agree to have a drink for me. Actually I am a tad bit nervous that you are having a drink since you don't drink. What if the drink does something to you and you forget about staying away from the Naval room?????


Be nice, now.