March 28 marked seven years since my grandmother passed away. Seven.
It seems like yesterday that she was here cussing like a sailor and making me laugh. Not a day goes by that I don’t miss her.
My grandma raised me from the age of 5 (along with my grandpa) and they became just like my parents. They were there for all of my good and not-so-good moments growing up.
When I think back about them, I have lots of fond memories. One that stands out is my grandmas trips to Las Vegas. Boy, oh boy, did she love to gamble.
I can remember going with grandpa one time to pick her up from the airport-I had to be around 6 years old. We had to go down an escalator to get to the area to meet her. Grandpa, not thinking anything of it, stepped on the escalator and started going down-expecting me to follow suit. Except no! I was afraid! I started crying for him. How funny did he look running UP the DOWN escalator? :)
Then when we would get home from the airport, I would sit next to grandmas suitcase-because I knew that inside there were surprises for me. You see, I was spoiled. Every time she went-and she went quite a few times-she would always bring me back souvenirs. It was nice, looking back, that she was always thinking of me.
For my 19th birthday, grandma took me to Casino Windsor in Canada. The legal gambling age is 19 and she wanted to take me to my first casino. Grandpa gave me $50 as a birthday present to take with me and what do you know? I won $275! Talk about beginners luck! (I have not had such a big win since…)
However, grandma had a special place in her heart for Las Vegas and she told me that for my 21st birthday we were going to go together.
My 21st birthday came, but I was busy with finals in my senior year of college. So the plans had to be pushed back. Maybe next year for birthday number 22?
My birthday is April 26. Grandma died March 28 the next year. Our trip to Vegas had to be put on hold for a much longer time.
When grandma died, we scattered her ashes in the backyard of our old house (aunt nancy took some to Colorado too). I had a different plan. I saved a small amount of grandmas ashes and made a promise-we we’re going to get our trip to Vegas.
Now, seven years later, I still haven’t been to Las Vegas. But that is about to change. I got the opportunity through work to attend NMX, a conference in Las Vegas from April 13-16.
Grandma and I are finally going to make the trip together! I plan to bring her along in my suitcase and have a blast. Her casino was the Flamingo and if you pay close attention you may see grandma sitting at one of the slot machines. Looking forward to our trip, finally.
Love you grandma…