Retirement Hobby #3 – Casino


I have enjoyed many different pastimes in the first few years of retirement. I published a book, Camp Follower One Army Brat’s Story by Michele Sabad. I joined a curling league. I travel. But this past winter, my husband and I added a weekly trip to the big government Casino to our activities. I’m from the generation that considered gambling “sinful”, and we never shake all our childhood beliefs, so yes, I get a guilty thrill admitting to this activity. Here goes, I would like to share my gambling habits today!

  1. First, there is no system to winning at the Casino. If you think you’ve figured it out, you haven’t. Figuring it out is a warning sign. Leave the Casino immediately.
  2. Second, here’s my system:

I only play the slots, more accurately called videos, really. I never go alone. My husband and I have a light lunch of soup, sandwich, and wine at the café to start (never go hungry or too uptight.) Then we find a comfy machine away from any crowd and settle in the two of us each on a chair or stool. Yes, we play the games together and take turns punching the buttons. Only 20$ at a time. If the machine isn’t fun (ie, isn’t piddling out little payouts by the time you’re down to 10$), cash out and switch machines. If the machine pays out over your original 20$, cash out and save the payout ticket. I have a place in my purse. Repeat for an hour or so, then go get some free coffee. The local Casino is very large and gets new machines in weekly, so the window shopping is part of the experience. Walk around, enjoy the ambience.  It can be mesmerizing, the Casino. The dim lighting showcasing flashes of machines like jewels, the soft dinging sounds chiming musically in surround-sound, the soft, plush carpet underfoot. It’s like wandering through an enchanted forest!

Back for another round at the machines. Then it’s time to go. The local Casino is very large and gets new machines in weekly, so the window shopping is part of the experience. Who doesn’t like to linger in an enchanted forest?

Count up the wins/losses in the car – so far, the routine limits our damage to about even most times. Sometimes we win bigger, but sometimes the opposite. And with spring arriving, I think the Casino will be over for the season. There are real enchanted forests out there now to explore, after all! But next winter…I’ll be back 😉


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