The human heart was—and remains—a mystery to me. But I’m learning. I have to. —Anthony Bourdain

But isn’t everything a gamble?

The sunset
The sunset at the casino poolside


Gambling. It’s been on my mind lately, maybe because I’ve been in the Thunderbird Rizal resorts casino twice the past week, but also because of what’s happening in my life. I won’t go into too much detail right now, but to say, the future is not as I thought it’d be a few months before this one.

I am not a fan of casinos. Mostly because I never win. I don’t know how to play the games, and the slots never give me back anything. The air is filled with smoke and the food is just okay. It’s an environment built to make you want to concentrate on playing, and when you’re not there to play, it can be difficult to have fun.

Except for maybe a few places that offer other distractions adjacent to the casino. When we’re there, I usually head to the poolside to enjoy a bite to eat and a few drinks to while away the time, sit and read.

Sometimes I go in to people watch. The people who enjoy gambling fascinate me. While everyone knows that the house always wins, it doesn’t stop them, they will keep playing the game, lose thousands of pesos in an hour, while away the day (and night) sitting in front of a screen or dealer, unsure whether their bank account will be wiped out or get more money in without a lick of work in.

It’s a risk isn’t it, because the luck of the draw can make or break you. There is only a certain degree of control in the play, and most of the time, it’s what you’re dealt that will challenge you to come up with your next move, and how you react to it will show what you’re made of.

Cue the obvious metaphor for life. Who except the big guy up there knows what the next thing is, who can predict what life will hand you next? Everything is a gamble because there isn’t any predicting what will come next, and you can only control how you deal with it, and react to the changes you’re served.

That’s what I feel lately. Like this gamble in my life is still keeping its cards to the chest, and that life is yet to show me that this reshuffling is a good thing or bad. It’s a risk, and I’m happy to go with it.

What’s your gamble?

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