The Lottery Ticket

Prior to retiring my co-worker for nine years was one of my sisters.  It made for interesting and sometimes frustrating work days for both of us because we are definitely two different personality types.

Sister #4  is direct and to the point.  She doesn’t waste time or energy on anything she has no control over.  If you piss her off you will know it immediately but once she’s said her piece it’s over.  She has a wicked sense of humor and an exceptionally quick wit.   I speak from first hand experience about her wicked sense of humor.

This is a story I shared a couple of years ago and thought I’d share again, especially since I figured enough time had passed that I could get even for what she did to me.

What she did to me:  “I stopped at the Dandy on my way to work and saw they had a new scratch off lottery ticket so I picked up one for you” Sis says while handing me the lottery ticket and a banana.

“Well thank you” I tell her as I get out the two winning scratch off tickets I had picked up the night before.  I won a whopping $9.00 which is big for me because I don’t usually win anything.

I think she was able to get me because of the banana.  I mean when someone is thoughtful enough to bring you a scratch off lottery ticket and a banana why would you expect them to pull a mean trick on you.

“Well good, maybe you’ll be lucky on the one I got for you too” my loving sister tells me.

I set her ticket aside on my desk and started working on some files.  Sis takes my winning tickets to look for numbers and letters because, according to her, that usually tells you the value of your winning prize.

“Aren’t you going to scratch off your numbers” Sis casually asks.

That should have sent off warning bells but like I said, I’m gullible, so I reached for the ticket she gave me.

Reading the front of her so thoughtful ticket it said to match three of the same dollar amounts and you win that amount.  Starting at the first spot, I scratch and reveal a $10,000 winner.  I scratch the second spot and it’s a $5,000 winner.  The third spot revealed another $10,000 winner.

At this point my excitement is rising and I’m bouncing a bit in my seat.  The fourth spot was a $100.00 winner, the fifth spot was a $1,000 winner  and the last spot revealed a $10,000 winner.

Hot damn, I matched three $10,000 prizes.

I’m stunned and then my heart starts pounding and my hands are beginning to shake.  I stare at the ticket not believing I matched the $10,000 three times.  I keep counting to make sure that there are really three $10,000 symbols showing and I’m not seeing things.  At this point I’m now rocking back and forth in my chair while muttering something like “oh my god” over and over.

“We won $10,000” I tell my co-worker/sister.  My voice is trembling and my eyes are filling with tears of joy.  Again, I should have picked up on her lack of enthusiasm but I was too enraptured by the thought of winning $10,000.

Evidently my face got very red as a result of my absolute joy about winning because Sis quietly tells me to read the back of the ticket.  I turn it over and see the usual spot where you fill in your name and address, blah, blah, blah.

IMG_20180421_133644

“Read the small print” she tells me.

So I glance at the back of the ticket again. “Yeah, I’ll put both our names down when I fill it out” I tell her, a huge grin plastered on my face.

“No”, she says, “You need to read the small print”.

I hand the ticket back to her.  I’m simply too excited about winning $10,000 to worry about little details like fine print.  I don’t care what it says, let me sign our names and collect our winnings….$10,000.

I was going to share my winnings with her.

She starts reading the fine print to me but I’m only listening with half an ear.   All I’m thinking is  I WON $10,000.

When she reads the part about claiming more than $100.00 you have to go to Fairy Dust Lane, I ask her to repeat that and she finally cracks up laughing.   Mind you, she never cracked a smile as I was getting more and more excited while scratching off my ticket.

It finally sinks in what she did and to say I was not amused is putting it mildly.  I wanted to share with her alright but what I wanted to share at that point wasn’t a good idea because of that workplace violence issue.

She did admit later, when I had cooled off a bit, that she felt bad when she saw the excitement in my face.  To admit to feeling bad for the prank she pulled on me was unusual for her.  I mean she never expressed any remorse over the time she fed Sister #3 a dog shit cookie.

My imaginative vocabulary has made my husband blush on the very rare occasions something upset me and I expressed it verbally.   I won’t repeat what I said to her.

Eventually, however, I saw the humor in what she did.  It took me a while, and though I felt my dashed hopes blowing away like dust in the wind I could see and appreciate the humor in what she did.

I didn’t forget, I simply filed it away waiting for my opportunity to get even.

However, being the sisters that we are, we decided to prank someone else and crush their dreams of being a big lottery winner. I mean misery does love company after all.

I “dropped” the ticket on the floor by the employee entrance making sure the winning dollar amounts were facing up.  Someone did pick up the ticket but who ever it was  never said anything to anyone.

I hope they read the small print on the back before trying to claim their prize.

Present day payback time:  Sister #4 celebrated her 60th birthday at the end of March.  I picked out a sentimental card with heartfelt words expressing how much she means to me and the joy I feel in having her as a sister.  I purchased several scratch off lottery tickets to place in her card.  I also included one fake lottery ticket figuring she’d be so busy scratching tickets she wouldn’t notice.

IMG_20180421_134011

She called to thank me for my gift and said she’d probably be busy until August scratching off all the lottery tickets she’d been given for her birthday.

“I hope you have some really good winners” I told her.

Now, picture the smile on the Grinch’s face when he realizes he’s going to ruin Whoville’s Christmas.  That was me  as I gleefully thought about getting back at her for what she did to me a few years ago.

I received a telephone call from her a week or two later. “Nice try”, she tells me, “I spotted your fake ticket right away”.

I should have known better.

She doesn’t have a gullible bone in her body, a slightly twisted sense of humor, yep, but definitely not gullible.

No problem though…..patience is my middle name.

 

 

All rights reserved.  I hope you enjoyed my story but please remember it’s my story so no using or copying any content in any manner without the express written permission of the owner…me.

A Thought About Blessings

Everyone has flaws.  One of mine is that I have always held on to the past and worried about the future and what could happen.  A smart person would understand that when you do that you miss out on what’s important.

Today.

I’m a smart person but I’ll admit to being a slow learner.  Since retiring I have been working on that little flaw in my personality.  It’s taking a bit of work because, as people who know me can confirm, I can be very stubborn.  On the plus side, once I make up my mind to do something I do it.

So I’ve made up my mind to focus on today, the here and now.

To recognize the daily blessings that are sometimes missed because of holding on to the past or worry about tomorrow.

This may sound kind of corny to some, but when I woke Easter morning my first thought was “This is the day the Lord has made, be happy and rejoice”.

I said a “thank you” for the simple fact that I woke to a new day, grateful for the ability to experience whatever the day may bring.  I enjoyed the simple pleasure of morning coffee with my husband as we watched the news and chatted about this and that.

As I began preparations for Easter dinner I ignored aching joints, realizing that despite those aches and pains, I was still able to move about.  Arthritis is a bitch but it could be worse.  A couple of Advil and it was on to the next task.

I consciously felt the pleasure of making preparations to celebrate with my family.  Anticipating their arrival and the chaos that comes with a home full of people who care about each other.  A blessing that some don’t experience.

Our eldest son and his family were the first to stop in for a visit before traveling to join our daughter-in-law’s family for Easter dinner.  They brought me a beautiful Easter lily, an Easter bread and ricotta pie.  Years ago I had tried making this pie without success.  Thankfully, my eldest daughter-in-law makes a delicious ricotta pie.  In turn I surprised them with candy that I made for my adult kids and Easter bags I put together for the grandchildren with their $2.00 bill.  Years ago my mother started the tradition of giving her grandchildren a $2.00 bill at Easter and I have continued that tradition with my grandchildren.   I also surprised my daughter-in-law with two containers of pipi salad, something my own mother-in-law used to make.  Her pleased smile made me happy and I enjoyed that moment.

My eldest grandson was my taste tester for the mashed potatoes since I’ve been unable to taste much due to a slight medical issue.  He gave me the thumbs up and asked that I save him any leftovers.  I happened to have one of his Mom’s empty containers so I filled it with mashed potatoes and handed it to him.  That got me another big smile.  Something so simple but it lightened my heart and I count that as a blessing.

Our middle and youngest sons and their families joined us for dinner.  It’s easier to set up buffet style so everyone can help themselves, including the grandkids.  No pressures about what you eat or don’t eat.  Being able to share that meal together is another blessing I’m grateful for.  I love to hear the sounds of their voices as conversations flow.  I enjoy listening to them as they tease each other and the resulting laughter.  The weather co-operated and the kids were able to play outside and enjoy their own time together.

Later, after everyone had gone home, I spent time cleaning the kitchen and getting dishes done.  As strange as it may sound, washing dishes relaxes me.  As I stood at the sink I thought about the day and all its little pleasures and blessings.

I remembered watching our youngest grandson eating cabbage salad.  No biggie you’d think but it reminded me of last Christmas and how he ended up taking the bowl off the kitchen counter, climbing into a chair in the living room and eating the cabbage salad directly from the bowl.   I watched him eat his Easter dinner and saw how he dipped his dinner roll and ham into the cabbage salad like it was a dip.   It’s a vegetable but I’m not telling him.

I remembered the look on my granddaughter’s face as I handed her the “Easter toast” as one of my grandsons called it.  She thinks Mammy makes the best toast.

I smiled as I remembered grandson #3 asking me if a lamp emits light or sucks dark which I learned later had something to do with a meme.   His Dad took exception to what he was saying and asked him if he wanted to do laps around the back field.  I calmly advised my son that since my grandson was talking to me he could say or ask what ever he wanted; it was our conversation.  Dad just smiled at his sons’ teasing comments about Dad’s Mom getting after him.

While washing a roasting pan I found my self chuckling as I remembered a moment with grandson #5.  His Mom had made a cake for dessert and it wasn’t until after the cake was served that I remembered I had made a cherry cheese pie.  My youngest son doesn’t care for cake so I always make this pie for holiday meals.  As I was cutting the pie grandson #5, who loves cheese cake, was standing next to me.  

“Would you like a piece” I asked him. 

“I’ve already had a piece of cake and my Dad would say no” he answered while looking at the pie.

“I didn’t ask what your Dad would say, I asked what you wanted”.  The look on his face said he wanted a piece of pie so I cut a small piece for him. 

“Come into the living room” I said after handing him his pie, “I’ll take care of your Dad”.  He wasn’t taking any chances, however, and ate his pie standing at the kitchen counter.   Sorry Dad, Grandma’s house, Grandma’s rules.

I’ve come to realize how freeing it is to be able to enjoy the here and now.  To not dwell on the past or worry about what tomorrow may bring.  It’s like a weight has been lifted that you weren’t aware you were carrying.  Certainly there are times when I slip into old habits and my mind starts to wander into the “what if” territory of tomorrow or the regrets and sorrow of the past.  I won’t let myself go there anymore because I’ve felt the simple enjoyment of today and I like it.  I’ve talked with Hubby about this and he’s offered a free kick in the ass whenever necessary. 

It’s easy to find your blessings each and every day when you take the time to look for them. 

I’m eagerly looking for mine, are you?

 

All rights reserved.  I hope you enjoyed my story but please remember it’s my story so no using or copying any content in any manner without the express written permission of the owner….me.