Saturday, April 14, 2007

The Domino Theory

You can feel the hunger. When I return to West Shores' at the end of a day and walk around a hallway here and there, I’m surrounded by smiling faces, most of them very eager for a visit. Yesterday, while I was lugging a bag of groceries back to my room, I happened to see a small gathering in one of the many activity rooms spread around on every floor. Earlier in the day, I'd noticed a daily activities sign and the word "Dominoes" jumped out at me. The dotted blocks clued me in. I'd stumbled onto the evening game.

“Who’s that?” one of the ladies whispered as I peeked in the room. I thought that was so cute.

“Who’s that?” I repeated and walked in, the three people looking up. “Mind if I watch?”

You should have seen the smiles; they couldn’t have been more happy to have me sit with them. And they were even more happy to explain all the ins and outs of the game to me.

I took a seat on the couch and watched Noel (on the left), Miss Vinnie (the woman on the left above) and I think the third woman's name was Louise, I'll have to check - as they concentrated on their games. They were moving their dominoes around much like you would Scrabble pieces, figuring numbers in their heads and watching one another's moves carefully. Noel was the scorekeeper. The most striking thing to me was how all three of them were intense about what they were doing - in a playful way, of course.

“It’s every person for themselves,” Miss Vinnie bounced in her chair and tapped me on the leg as she glanced at me over her shoulder.

I went back to the room to grab my camera to show you a couple of shots here, asking them if it was okay to take a few pictures.

I’ll have to take a few more hallway walks to see what else I can find here, apart from the interviews, that is.

And by the way - the competitive bug didn't hit me the same way it had in Topeka when I lost control in a heated shuffleboard battle. The fact is, if I had tried my hand at dominoes, Vinnie would have most assuredly kicked my ass.

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