Saturday, July 02, 2016

Santa Anita Race Track

 A few days after the shoot with Amy Schumer and Seth Rogen which had horses in it, Calvin took me to the race track. How's that for a coincidence? I never even thought about that until now! Fortunately, I didn't have to wear his clothes this time around.

At Santa Anita Race Track

He wanted to gamble. I did some gambling years ago when I used to drive school kids as a job. I would stop by at the casino while waiting, and kill time, playing the 5 cent slot machines. Monte Casino, Fourways, South Africa. I won so many times in a row that I would even go there even when I wasn't working. It was a bit of a drive from my place in Auckland Park, but it was worth it. Until I started losing. And losing and losing! I had made a mental note of how much money I had won over the weeks. Whatever happened, I didn't want to lose more than I won, overall! I wasn't going to be those people! I remember the last time I went to gamble in Monte, I met a lady in the elevator. It was the first day of the month. It was early in the morning too! I know, what was I doing in the casino early on a Saturday morning? Well, gambling!

The lady told me that she had got paid the previous day, on her way home, she decided to start off at the casino. I guess, to double her money! She lost her entire salary! A lot of people get paid monthly in South Africa. This wasn't a weekly wages! She lost her entire month's salary! (damn it! I just got bitten by a mosquito in seven different spots I can't get to on my back! I was typing naked. Bite me! No pun intended!)
The lady told me that she is addicted to gambling, ya think! I felt so bad for her. She has a husband and children and obviously bills to pay. No chance of those bills getting paid now! She told me that She hadn't even paid for rent. She couldn't wait for the automatic payments to come off her account, she needed to gamble before all those things happened. I sympathised with her and all addicts of any kind out there. She told me that she woke up first thing in the morning, without telling anyone at home what she had done with the salary she had worked the whole month for, went through her car looking for change. She found coins in the nooks of her car seats and some all around the car and headed back to the Casino. Isn't that sad? That after everything that the casino just did to her less than 12 hours prior, she was back for more? In her head, I guess, she had hoped that she would hit the jackpot. But that's what you thought in the beginning when you lost your whole salary, but then again... what is she supposed to do? Not take a chance? Take coins to her husband as her contribution for the month's bills? I guess not.

When we got to the casino floor, I wished the lady (and myself) good luck and we went for our chances to hit the jackpot. I don't know what happened to her but I didn't. In fact, it got to the point where, I kept going back to the ATM to withdraw more money for another chance until this big, white man ( I say white because, we're talking about South Africa), approached me. He had been sitting next to me for a bit. He must have noticed that I wasn't doing so great. And that I was emptying up my bank account. It wasn't a good look, I'm sure! I, basically was becoming the woman from the elevator. I had told myself that I wouldn't play more than I had won, like I mentioned before. He didn't know that and not only that, who knows if I was going to stick to my plan? Gambling is a btch! The kind gentleman,told me, 'Maybe you should stop for now!' Something to that effect. It was like an angel had seen what I was doing, that I was sinking and had to warn me. It came in the form of that man and he allowed it to. When something like that happens, you pay attention. I stopped immediately. I withdrew whatever little bit of money I had in the machine, cashed out and went home.

I was happy that that guy was there, who knows what would have happened if he didn't want to intrude or something? I wish that the elevator lady had had someone like that the previous night. That was my last time in the slots. Well, until Vegas. Just for a few bucks, that's it!

I digress! I told Calvin not to waste his money betting on horses, instead to put all the money he had hoped to play with and see how much he would have saved in six months to a year. He gave me a kiss and told me 'You're such a  smart Brook! Now, get ready! Let's go to the racetrack!'

I got ready, as long as he's not gambling my money, I can't care more about it than he does. We found a spot to park at the Santa Anita race track and made our way in. We had to pay entry fee. It wasn't much. When you pay, they give you a booklet with discount coupons. We grabbed a snack and went inline to make our bets, Calvin gave me some money to play too. I told him I would rather buy shoes, but he told me it was meant for there and then, so I played. I chose a number of horses, something kept telling me to pick this one color, but for some reason, I didn't. Normally, I listen to that voice, but I didn't that day. After I submitted my picks, I told Calvin that I had a feeling I should have bet that other colored horse (it's not the color of the horse but that of the shirt of the guy riding it). None of my horses won. The one I wished I picked came in third. It battled with one of mine. The one I wanted to exchange for the one that won. It was torture-some watching them battle it out towards the finishing line. I don't want to have that feeling again! You know when you feel like being mad at someone but the only person you can be mad at is yourself because you are the only person who made that decision? Well, in my case, Calvin helped. I asked him to help make the final decision, he helped choose the losing one. Not his fault, it's more mine now that he helped because I had promised myself previously that when I ask him to choose, to always go with what he didn't choose. I went home feeling blah. Lesson for the day was, no matter what, follow the voice within!
Calvin's reflection. BTW we were twinning, he coincidentally had a grey shirt on and grey hat

After that, we went to one of our fave restaurants for dinner. Indonesian. It made it all better!

Interesting Rice drink on the right. Acquired taste for sure

Good food! Always!

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