Maybe I’m a Millionaire

On the way home from a good day out in the Smoke with Celia I bought a copy of the day’s Guardian and a lottery ticket. We’d walked, talked, eaten, been to the British Museum; Celia to the Scythians exhibition, me to look at the Assyrian galleries in greater detail.

The day was colder than I’d thought when I left home. I was glad of the hat I bought in Leigh on Wednesday. Lunch was in a small Korean café in Museum Street called Bimimbab. Delicious. I’ll happily go there again.

Doing the lottery routinely is a relevantly new thing for me. In the past I have bought the occasional ticket; at one place of work I was part of a consortium that never won anything; but buying a ticket every week is a recent development. It has a lot to do with Brexit and my fears for the future. The chances of winning the lottery are extraordinarily remote, but a touch less remote than if I had no ticket.

On the whole my expectations are low. I think of it as my weekly contribution to supporting the arts, sport and local good causes. But in the moments before I check my ticket, and it can be two weeks before I get around to it, I fantasise what I would do if I were suddenly the recipient of a large sum of money. That deferment is part of the enjoyment. Before I’ve checked and seen that my ticket has no matches there’s always the delicious possibility of untold wealth with my name on it. I talked about it with my cousin Russell and discovered he does the same thing, as does my friend Judy.

I can be quite serious in my fantasies, or rather quite discriminatory. When you don’t have money so much in the shops looks desirable. Acquire even just a little and you become fussier, more choosy. Or is that just Russell and me? So in those moments before I find out that yet again my ticket is destined immediately for the recycling bag, no passing Go, no collecting £200, I look at MasterB and think about the work I’d get done on das Boot, wonder what sort of home we could have. I don’t get much further than that, but it’s surprising how focussed I can be, how comparatively modest my financial ambition is. I said to Celia today that half a million would be do, a lot in many places but about enough for a two bedroomed flat in the area of London where I live now. Maybe a quieter part of it with no drummers living next door.

So if by the time you read this I have discovered I am as rich as Croesus it’ll be interesting to see if the scale of my projected spending has changed and I’m already house hunting in Chelsea or Hampstead, or if Sunny Walworth or surrounding neighbourhoods still float my boat, and if my boat still floats in east anglia, or if it, or a more luxurious successor, is moored closer to home.

9 thoughts on “Maybe I’m a Millionaire

  1. When I worked at Gatwick was in a consortium – we did occasionally win but only small. On the late shift on a Saturday evening we would enjoy the thought of winning and leaving a message on the office ansaphone. “Won the lottery. Shift cancelled, all gone to celebrate. All resign with immediate effect”. It tickled us no
    end!

    • It’s the frisson of hope it gives that makes the expenditure worthwhile, that and not immediately checking.
      Much cheaper than heroin, and a lot less harmful. Even when you don’t win you contribute to something that needs support. Or am I deluding myself?

  2. JB and I have had discussions of what we would do if we won a substantial amount of money. JB, consistent for 53 years, thinks we should save/invest it. I would start a foundation, give it all to charity. I don’t buy tickets because I don’t think our marriage would survive that much money. LOL

    • The crazy thing about London property prices is I could win £1,000,000 and still be having to do my sums to see if I could afford to live the rest of my life in a property. In my will percentages of my estate are left to good causes, and some to the nephews, but it’s the care i am likely to lead in old age I should like to be able to fund first!

  3. Old joke: “God, why don’t I win the lottery?” The response: “buy a ticket.” I keep forgetting to participate and thus have loss the opportunity for half a billion US this weekend. Easy come, easy go. Would you quit working if you won? Paying off debts and travel seem to be the primary aspirations in the US.

    • Knowing I had a cushion to help ride out Brexit would be good, and to be able to pay bills in my dotage for heating care and maintenance of self and home! But I didn’t win this time…

      • I think your aspirations need to rise to meet the amount of the improbable win. Though, in reality, I must be what most lottery winners do first. Fingers crossed for next time – and remember who your friends are.

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