This is a story of two sisters’ journey and quest for adventure and fortune. A lot of quests are noble- a quest for a cure for cancer, a quest for world peace, a quest for conservation of natural resources, a quest to end world hunger. The reason for this journey is not so noble. Not that lives won’t be changed by the results, at least hopefully. We are naming this journey the 4-C Adventure.
We are sisters who have a love for casinos, contests, and consignment shopping all while finding a way to make a charitable donation to people in need. Sisters with an affinity for adventure, gambling, good food, staying in nice hotels, exotic cocktails, people watching, entering contests, while still finding a charitable purpose to justify leaving our husbands to fend for themselves and take care of our cats for three weeks. Yes, that’s right. Three weeks and let us be clear that no one was hurt during this time. Our cats didn’t miss a meal, our husbands didn’t starve to death and didn’t file for divorce while we were gone.
Let us introduce ourselves. Marie Anderson from Mansfield, Texas and the inventor of this brainstorm and Dianne Woods from Iola, Texas and the older sister by eight years but frequently tells people that Marie is the oldest. Just so you know who is talking to you, this blog is being written by Dianne unless we tell you otherwise. It is too confusing to differentiate between the two of us in the telling of our tale. Marie is retired from school teaching and Dianne is a retired sales rep. Having too much time on our hands we decided to use our lack of skills to take a vacation and try to win some money to make a financial contribution to our households.
Anyway, back to our quest. Springtime is a magical time of year. Texas bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes and buttercups are in full bloom; the warmth of sunshine after a cold winter, a feeling of renewal and new beginnings and equally important, Albertsons Grocery Monopoly Game. You know that game similar to McDonald’s without having to purchase a large drink or sandwich to get a game ticket. And because Albertsons is regional and not national, we decided we would shrink the playing field and maybe have better luck concentrating on a specific region. We were dedicated to being a winner. The 2015 game runs from February 4 through May 19. As much as we would have loved to go to all participating states, not only was there a time issue but also the survival of our marriages was at stake. We chose to concentrate on the Southwestern states.
Moving on, this journey starts on March 25 at 8:30 AM as we pulled out of Marie’s driveway. My husband was there to see us off with a tear of sadness/joy in his eye. Marie’s husband had already left for work because let’s face it, someone has to work. So out we took, trunk loaded with suitcases packed with enough underwear and clothes for 3 weeks and two boxes in the back seat with real necessities- snacks, water, map(even though we had navigation), hand wipes and sanitizer, paper towels, a blank journal, plastic grocery bags for trash and dirty clothes, and first aid supplies. Oh, and a bottle of scotch. Never know when you may get a snake bite.
We had to save room in the back seat for consignment shop purchases as well as Albertsons purchases. Marie gave us a head start on this trip by shopping at Albertsons for her groceries. In addition, she discovered that Albertsons would give one bonus game ticket for every package of Top ramen noodles purchased plus one bonus ticket for every 8 packages. In Texas the prices were usually 4/$1.00, and on sale 5/$1.00 although we discovered prices varied from state to state. We would still like to get an explanation to that because in California they were 3/$1.00. Before we left on our journey, Marie had collected several thousand game tickets and donated approximately 100 cases of Ramen to food banks. Not only were we able to maximize our chances of winning up to $1,000,000 but we also helped to feed families and to take a tax deduction in the process. Out of the tickets Marie collected before our trip, she received coupons for a free can of tuna, many coupons for a free Red box rental, 2 free cartons of almond milk and lots of coupons for cents off of a product and more importantly 700 free monopoly game tickets to redeem on our travels. Not ones to lose our enthusiasm and determination, we pulled ourselves up by our boot straps and set out on our amazing adventure.