This year we celebrated my Mom’s birthday by taking her to the Woodbine Race Track in Toronto for a nice lunch buffet and to experience the thrill of horse racing. This was the view of the track from our table when we first sat down. As first timers, right away, we were inundated with acronyms, terminology and lingo about horse racing that we knew very little about. Luckily, we had a patient customer service lady who visited our table to explain the process, the rules, and how to read/interpret the jockey and horse stats as well.
Armed with whatever little knowledge I had managed to gather in four and a half minutes, I shyly approached the betting desk, slid a toonie across the counter and cluelessly bet on a “4-place”. With a sense of pride and accomplishment, I returned to the table not entirely sure of what I had bet, or what a “4-place” really was but I wasn’t going to let that stop me! Just a few minutes later, as I continued to feast on at least 18 different types of salads, cold cuts, ham, roast beef, omelettes and desserts from the buffet table, the horses left the box and we were off to the races!
The invigorating feeling of watching your horse lead the pack with the other horses trailing behind was incredible. Completely unaware of our volume, we cheered our horses on as we leaned forward from our chairs, while the other more composed and experienced tables gazed at us unapprovingly. It didn’t matter to us. We were excited, and there was no reason not to show it!
My horse placed second in that race which meant that I was a nickel richer based on the odds and the place I bet. Needless to say, I quickly became a pro better and at the end of the day I netted $650! Oops, nope sorry, that’s not right…I forgot a decimal. I netted $6.50 — yup that’s more like it. Anyway, small details aside, it was such a cool experience. I learned quite a bit about horse-racing, gained a few pounds by overdosing on raw smoked Atlantic salmon (my favourite), and won a few bucks on the side too!
Great place, great food, great event, and great company. Very successful weekend and I can’t wait to go back! Anyone wanna join me?