Las Vegas is a great place to study humanity.
Unlike the weekends when the Sam's Town casino is bustling with energy from tourists and families who have driven or flown to Las Vegas to enjoy a vacation, the vast majority of the weekday visitors seem to be local senior citizens. Many of them appear to be tired and dejected as they play the video poker and slot machines. They stare at the screen, drink in hand, and appear to be oblivious to the world around them.
My first thought was how sad this all seemed. Instead of sitting at a casino mindlessly pushing a button, these seniors could be doing a lot of other, more productive activities from volunteering, to spending time with family members, to reading a book, to even traveling around the good old U.S.A. in an RV on a great adventure. But then I must remind myself about the teachings of Pema Chodron who stated, “If we learn to open our hearts, anyone, including the people who drive us crazy, can be our teacher.”
We must remember not to judge others based upon our own notions about what they should or should not do. While I do know that some people have become addicted to gambling, without knowing their full stories, who is to say that these people are addicts? Perhaps these senior citizen live very rewarding, productive, and full lives and simply come to Sam's Town during the week to socialize with their friends.
Las Vegas is a place for self-reflection.
Aloha -- Cathi