Day of Mah Jongg Firsts

If you know me you probably know that I have been playing serious Mah Jongg for almost 25 years. I used to fly home from London the day before my Mah Jongg game and fly back out the day after. Carter spent many infant hours in her stroller sleeping in the dark of the very old ladies Locker room at HVCC while I played in the card room. Sometimes I played while nursing her.

Today two things happened at Mah Jongg that I have never had happen before. The first was the less exciting. I was playing with Christy, Deanna and Morgan and we had three wall games in a row. For the non-fluent in Mah Jongg that means that no one won the game, the “wall” beat us. When we have a wall game we each put a quarter In the pot and that pot goes to the winner of the next game. After three wall games the pot was up to $3. This is high finance in Mah Jongg.

As the fourth game was progressing it appeared that both Christy and Deanna had a big chance at winning. My hand was a long shot and Morgan was past long shot. We got down to the last few tiles. “Oh, my, we are going to have a forth wall game!” This is something that has never happened. Then I picked a tile that entitled me to exchange for Deanna’s joker. There were only four tiles left and I needed another joker to win. Deanna picked and did not win. Morgan picked and did not win. Christy picked and did not win. One tile left and it was mine. I said, “I hope this is a joker.” I picked and it was! I screamed “Mah Jongg” like I never have in my life. Not only did I win the wall money but everyone paid me double bringing my winnings for one hand to $4.50.

As if that wasn’t exciting enough, it was not the only first or biggest miracle of the day. I was sitting out a game and Mary Lloyd was in. I was in the kitchen getting lunch ready and Christy called me into the living room. The players were just finishing the first Charleston and Christy had a question for me. She was East and wanted to know if she could stop the passing and declare Mah Jongg for she already had a winning singles and pairs hand. She was in luck that she was east and got the tiles before the start of the second Charleston! I have only ever seen someone have Mah Jongg once at the end of both Charleston’s but never in the middle. It was very exciting and seems like she should have won more than $3.00 for that miracle hand.

If you don’t play Mah Jongg and want to learn, or if you play and feel like you need an advance lesson let me know. This is the most fun game. I will be having some new classes based on demand.

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