Well, I did it, I played Bingo for the first time, with my Mother and her neighbors at her assisted living residence. First time? you ask. Yes, this was my first time, I was a Bingovirgin. When I was growing up Bingo was considered gambling, something verboten by the denomination I belonged to in my youth. As Mom reminds me (again and again) she had only ever played Bingo once, way back in 1969.
I remember watching Mom and her Aunts, but I was too young to play. "What would Aunt T__ think of me playing Bingo?" Mom asks again.
So why do the "old folks" play Bingo? Well, as I learned from watching, they play because it's an educational tool. Who knew! As a child of two teachers (and a mother of two sons) I know all about the art of making learning fun.
"G fifty-six, G five six"
Remember numbers? Can you find the 56 on your card? Can you find the 56 on both of your cards? No, not four six, the five six.
I watch the woman who is running the game. She is keeping an eye on the cards of a few of the players. Giving out hints to those who need them. She would sometimes call out numbers that had been called long ago, so that hopefully Alice can find N44 this time.
I'm watching Mom's card as well as my own. It makes my heart heavy to see how hard it is for Mom to identify the numbers. To ponder if she should cover the 67 with a chip or not. To have to work at finding that simple answer.
I'm so busy watching everyone else that I don't cover my N42.
"You should have all your N's covered." says the woman running the game. This last round is a game called cover all where you try to be the first to cover the whole card. Hey, I'm new at this, what do I know. My N42 is bare, I really don't care, I'm just here to be with Mom. A few more numbers are called and then she calls N42, she's been watching everyone's cards, mine as well.