Everyone with shares has now been emailed with a breakdown (a financial breakdown, not one of the nervous variety). Whilst no one's going to be retiring to the Bahamas quite yet on the returns, we've had a stab at a bunch of events, had a few cashes, a lot of deep runs, and everyone got back a sizeable chunk of their original outlay. Whilst some armchair critics out there will likely have a scoff at this (welcome to the world of the Interweb), the reality of poker, and particularly tournaments, is that once the money is invested in a buy-in, it's effectively considered already gone, and any return on that investment is always a good thing. That's pragmatically the only way to view it, however talented you might be, or think you are at the game. When the planets line up, you ping something big, and that hopefully springboards up to bigger and far better things. A few events this time could have gone better, or I might just as easily have busted earlier, but from a consistency viewpoint, I was happy with my overall game, I was tuned in, not afraid to take chances, and kept a good balance on and off the table to avoid any burnout. I'm easily my own strongest critic, and those who know me better than the casual reader know that I take what I do very seriously, even if my table manner and style of writing sometimes portrays the polar opposite. I extended the trip twice this time, and honestly would have loved to stay out here even longer, but I have a few UK commitments, and need to come back, so it's regroup and prep for what's next to come. More on that in a bit.
This is where the updates swerve away from hand histories and chip counts, but at the risk of sounding like a two bit article writer, the feedback I get regarding non-poker stuff I write generally suggests that it's well received so until I get an overwhelming vote to the contrary, I'll continue.
This was a big part of the trip for me this time. From the outset I'll say I'm not a great golfer, which is to say I birdie occasionally, and generally point the club in the right direction. I had a bit of a late start in life with the game, but have found I enjoy it a lot, it's good for the mind and body, and I'm lucky enough to have patient and chilled friends, one of whom is also a PGA pro who's slowly helped me to improve and learn technique. In Las Vegas in particular (outside of the Summer months when the desert heat just makes playing simply unbearable) there are some amazing value golf deals to be had, and over forty (yes FORTY) golf courses set around Nevada, with stunning views and varying challenges. I wish I'd known all this sooner, but in future trips this will most certainly be part of my routine. As the saying I've now learned goes "a bad day of golf is still better than a good day at work". I can certainly attest to this. I'm improving over time, and hope to play more when both time and good weather permit.
Time spent with friends was of great importance. I'm blessed to have some great friends in Las Vegas. My good pal Gary and the dogs Rocky and Trixie rank right up there. We had a lot of laughs, and any time spent with dogs is never time wasted in my opinion. Dios Mio man.
I also escaped once or twice out to hike and see stuff. As I have said, the U.S, and especially Nevada, is a beautiful place. If ever you visit, get out and see stuff away from the strip. Don't just drink and gamble. You'll thank me for it.
As a few of you know, I quit my job prior to leaving for this trip. After two years it had simply ran it's course, and I needed new challenges, new ways to earn and also more freedom to do the things I want. I am by no means afraid of hard work, but the 9-5 soon became a 7-7, and I was constantly exhausted and never got to go out any more as I was always too tired, plus my earnings, though regular, were significantly lower than they had been through poker. So here we are. No regrets, and it was overall a great experience, but I needed to be my own boss once more, whatever I come to be doing.