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Friday, July 10, 2015

Memory Lane has changed for this Living Fossil!

Tonight I tried taking a trip down memory lane. But my memories are a lot different from present day reality.  I went to bingo.

Back in the early 1970s, my mother in law loved going to bingo, and to keep her company, I usually went along.  She  usually drove her car.  I drove by myself tonight, but I thought of her as I drove. It felt a little strange.

First I stopped at Walmart to pick up a couple of things I forgot on my last trip to town. As I was leaving, my daughter in law stood just outside the door visiting with a mutual friend. We talked for a few seconds and she complimented me on my outfit. I thanked her and told her I was going to bingo. Then I asked her to come with me.  She seemed happy to be invited.  She had a little shopping to do, so I told her I'd go on ahead and she could meet me at the Legion hall.

I drove to the Legion and parked in front. I was surprised to be able to park so closely, because years ago, when I went with Georgia, my mother in law, we sometimes had to park in the next block and walk, it was so crowded.

I walked in the door to the hall, and immediately noticed a big difference.  Before, the sturdy cardboard cards, with little red plastic windows over the numberswere all piled on top of a few long tables, which overflowed onto the floor.  Women and some men, sorted through the pile, searching for those favorite cards.  My mother in law, usually watched for certain numbers or sets of numbers in the corners of the cards. For instance, the card with all fives in the corners, 5, 15, 65, and 75, would be a huge favorite of hers. All threes, fours, twos and ones were also favorites. Next she would make sure she had at least one of every number from 1 to 75. She played between 8 and 12 cards every game. The cards cost $1 for the first card, and 50 cents for each additional card.  The games paid around $10 to $25 per game. 

Now, there were no tables in the hallway, and the cards were now paper, three cards to a sheet or more, some in pads of several thicknesses, some were single sheets of various sizes.  The sheets were $1 for the small single sheets, and $13 (gasp) for the larger sheet pads.  There was also a white sheet with all the games for the evening listed, like a program. I bought at least one of each, and found a place to sit, where I could spread out a bit, with room for Jackie to sit when she arrived. 

I also bought a purple ink dauber bottle for a dollar.  Gee, this is costing a lot more than I had expected. But looking at the program, I see the games pay out $30 to $50 for the regular games, and the jackpots were $950, $450, and $300.  Definitely better payouts..if you win.

I read for a while, checked my cell phone for messages, made a to do list for tomorrow, and then started reading in my paperback novel again. Jackie arrived about 15 minutes before bingo was due to start.

It was a little confusing at first, trying to figure out which cards are to be used for which games, what the special games actually were, and learning how to daub the numbers without soaking the page below the top level..but we soon were comfortable with it. We had some great help from a friend of Jackie's. Several people from our hometowns were there, so we did have some support of sorts.

We didn't win anything tonight, even though I just knew I was going to win that $950...NOT!  LOL!

We did get invited to come back by  our friends and even asked to ride with one of them, so will think about that prospect. Since I have retired, I'm becoming quite the hermit, and I start thinking of my two shih tzus as human.  So it is time to get out a little more.

I may start going to the convent to go swimming too.  Haven't decided about that yet.  

Anyway, the culture shock is starting to wear off, and I'm already thinking of how to make my next bingo experience more comfortable and more profitable.  Here's to Memory Lane!  Even with the changes, it was good to revisit.  Night all!

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