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Archive for the ‘horse racing’ Category

Run Ponies, Run

On his blog, ten billion butterfly sneezes, friend Ken Nelson, former resident of Norton, Kansas, where we, too, lived for 8 years, remembered a trip to the horse races, he, his wife, Nancy, Dale and I took. I best remember the first time we went together. Ken designed a computer program that predicted winners based on several factors (which I long ago have forgotten.) The night before, he and Dale drove up to Nebraska and bought a racing program for the next day. He plugged in the figures and printed out computer sheets for each of us.

The next day dawned and off we went to Grand Island, Nebraska to the races. Still being a bit of a novice at the races, I bet mostly by the sheet — and I won and won and won. In fact, we each won and won. By the end of the day, we amassed about $1500 total. What a day! I even tipped the attendant in the restroom $5. Never had I ever done anything like that, nor have I since then!

For me, the most memorable part was the trip home. We’d drive awhile, until someone would say, “You know, I’ve always wanted to buy a ——” (fill in the blank.) And someone else would say, “Buy it!” And we’d all laugh. Then another person would chime in with another wish-list item. We stopped in Kearney at a steak house and the waitress got a $20 tip. We felt that glorious generousness, the one that comes from good luck.

Practicality won out in the end as both of us couples paid a few bills with our earnings. However, we promised ourselves that we’d each buy something we really wanted, that we normally wouldn’t spend the money on. I don’t remember what the fellas each bought. However, I do remember Nancy wanted contact lens, and she got them. I wanted a good, portable radio/boom box. It was expensive — really nice. The boys’ eyes got big and they yelled when they saw Mom’s new toy! We had that thing for years and the entire family enjoyed it immensely. I mourned its demise when it finally succumbed to old age. Yet, every once in awhile, I’d look at it and remember the day I won the money to buy it. Good fortune just smiles sometimes.

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