Out of Atlantic City....and back again!

Melvyn Brown
Thu 21 Oct 2010 02:05

39: 22.9N 74: 25.3W


On the night before we planned to leave Atlantic City we went over to the Trump Casino.  Unfortunately Melv’s tuxedo was at the cleaners and I had failed to pack my little black dress (not that it would have been terribly “little”), and what a good job because we would have been completely over dressed.  Don’t think Casino Royale….think Mecca Bingo.  We had no idea of the etiquette and my first faux pas was to try and feed a dollar bill into one of the slot machines…they only take $5 and up.  The handle is still there, but purely cosmetic, there is a push button which means you can loose your money SO much quicker!  We had agreed to lose $20 each (last of the high rollers!) and it has to be said it was easy to keep to your limit with a modicum of self control.  You could feed in a large denomination note, but at any time you could elect to CASH and a bar coded slip was spat out which you could feed into another machine.  There were machines dotted about the room where you could cash in your ticket and collect your winnings (a human didn’t need to get involved for anything less than $3,000 I think it was). 


The clientele was for the most part elderly…and then some.  I saw one lady in a wheelchair in front of one machine  – patently suffering from dementia – her family might argue they brought her along because it gave her some pleasure to play the machines (and if she should happen to come up with the jackpot…well that wouldn’t be a disaster).   Walking around looking at the poker tables I very nearly came a cropper walking into a badly parked zimmer frame (honest!).  At the back of the room there was a separate High Stakes area, still with one armed bandits, but presumably it cost more then 25c a go.  I won the most.  I won $6.25 on one occasion.


The weather forecast for the following day – and for a couple of days after that too – wasn’t good, but Melv was keen to keep moving south and so we got up and set sail at first light (kitted out with thermals, hats and gloves too).  The wind was strong and we were going straight into it and we hadn’t even made the Trump Taj Mahal Casino after 30 minutes of motoring, our speed being only 2.5knots.  Melv shouted over the noise of the engine “I don’t think we are going to make it”.  “Bloody hell”, I thought “I didn’t realise things were that dire” and my past life began to flash before me.  The replay had only got as far as the black and white footage of the wedding of Princess Margaret and Tony Armstrong-Jones when I realised what he meant we weren’t going to make Cape May in one go and we were going to go back to harbour.  Frankly we were loathe to spend $102 per night and when we saw another yacht anchored just outside the marina, Melv suggested we anchored for one – possibly two nights. By the end of the day there were four of us anchored (which deprived Trump Marina of $450+ by my reckoning).


Now I seem to recall that when Popeye dropped the anchor (or more accurately threw it overboard) the boat would stop on a sixpence.  Well let me tell you getting Zarafina anchored took a lot of faffing about.  So there we are - my first experience of being “anchored”.  Not like being “moored” and having a launch come out to take you to the shore.  I thought to myself it must be like this in prison, and indeed Melv immediately settled down with a book in a manner which reminded me of Fletcher stoically doing his porridge without complaint.  And it was cold, with no prospect of it getting any warmer as the day wore on.  And the next day’s weather wasn’t any better and so we sat it out another day.


Melv was determined we were leaving on Saturday, come what may and after two days “anchored” I was stir crazy and in total agreement.