Firstly, apologies to all. As many of you will know, my 2019 WSOP trip was all teed up and ready to go, shares were pretty much sold out. Flight book, car booked, accommodation sorted. And then...nothing, I cancelled everything.
The curse I guess of having a website with a blog that is open to the public view, is that you need to keep it updated, and keep the audience up to speed with events pertaining to the poker aspect of my life. Without laying bare every gory detail, here are the broad strokes behind me pulling out of the Summer series.
As I was gearing up for the Summer WSOP out and getting things ready, one day at work I received a phone call from the hospital. My mum (who is 80) had taken a fall whilst on a bus, basically came off the seat as it went around a sharp corner. She'd been knocked unconscious for a minute or so, and had broken her collar bone. Of course this was a terrible thing, and after I got to the hospital, I was told that they wanted to keep her in overnight just to do some additional tests. To skip ahead a few pages, the tests revealed something that warranted more concern, and in fact turned out to be lung cancer. As you can (or can't) imagine, this changed everything in life completely. Poker very quickly went to the back of the line in terms of importance, and in the next few months, there was a major operation, and a long and arduous period of recovery for her after surgery, for which I clearly needed (and wanted) to be around as much as possible.
How we stand now, is that the op seems to have been a huge success, and the surgeon seems to have got everything that was of concern. Time will tell, and she's being closely monitored, but is now markedly better than a few months ago, and is making great strides towards a full recovery. She's a tough old bird with much more resilience than I'll ever have. The fall on the bus actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise, as we'd never had known about the cancer had it not happened. Oh, the irony of life.
As many of you will know, Doyle, my dog, is absolutely my everything. He's been with me for the best part of 17 years, and has (I think) lived a full and well cared for life. People who don't have dogs just won't get it, and that's fine, but he's far more important to me than the overwhelming majority of people I've met in life. He doesn't lie, cheat, steal, stab you in the back, or turn out to be a psycho. He just asks for a bit of love and a lot of food, and that's it. The rewards you get back are a hundred fold, trust me. He's been there for me through highs, lows, marriage, countless relationships, and the dramas of life we all have to endure, and has always been a huge source of comfort and happiness in some of the darkest times. He is quite literally my best friend. Last October, he also was diagnosed with cancer. I booked him in and there was an operation to remove the tumour, but tests after removal showed it was malignant and had spread to other parts of the body. Given his age, and the trauma that numerous extra ops would cause a dog of his advanced years, I took the hard decision to just let him live out his days and make him as comfortable as I possibly could, and spoil him as much as I could. He's been doing fine, even up to now, and I've withdrawn a fair bit from my normal life, mainly to spend much more time with him, and also help Mum with her recovery.
I took him the the vet 2 weeks ago and they said they reckon he now has less than 3 months to live. At present he's in no pain and is still living the good life, but he will decline, and I have come to terms with the fact that I just need to do the right thing for him, not for me if and when the moment comes. It will cause my world to fall apart, I have no doubt, but it is what it is. For now he just gets spoiled and fed a lot. The consolation to me is that he doesn't know he's ill. Unless he reads this blog of course. 17 years is an amazing age for a dog his size, and he's been loved and cared for, which is all we can hope for. So there it is.
I have another trip currently booked for November of this year, when I will play the Venetian DSE series. At present, I have not advertised this on the main header page, as depending on the situation with Doyle, I may end up cancelling this trip again, and I don't want to keep messing people around. If it gets close to the wire, I might even just go and play cash games this time instead. But if it looks like I am playing a tournament package in the end, please be assured that I'll keep everyone updated and they can invest as normal should they wish to.
Thanks to those who have reached out privately with messages of support, it helped a lot.
More to follow. Thanks guys.