When Sally stepped off the plane, she could feel the dry crackling on her lips, the breath within her mouth cool in comparison. It was if everything was the inverse; reminiscent of hot breath into a cold Cleveland winter night. Impetus inspired by the day she did not drive home straight from her desk job at an insurance agency in Medina. She had begun to feel the beigeness of the walls of cubical land squeezing in around her.
She wanted to feel something else on her skin. Something other than the elliptical, Lean Cuisine, and Netflix. The snow and ice were mostly melted from the worst winter of her Midwestern life. She lived among the bland, blonde, polite people of her small town. She knew it was silly that Cleveland felt so dangerous and enticing. But she needed that stepping stone, that first taste of something that thirsted in the pit of her belly. She wanted to feel short of breath.
It was a slightly meandering 30-minute drive to Horseshoe Casino. She paused in the parking lot, staring at the glittering sign above the door, her pulse thrusting into veins. She knew that she loved gambling from an early age, betting pennies and quarters on Old Maid, Go Fish, and when she was a teenager, “Kangaroo Rat King”. She wanted to step into the labyrinthine maze of lights and sounds, engulfed in the smell of money and stale cigarettes. It was the quiet concentration of the serious gamblers that she craved and the radiance of winning
She gathered up her purse and the neatly stacked bills that she had stolen from the insurance company for her new adventure. As she exited the car, she faced a mirror image of herself in the front doors and just beyond that a very handsome man approached with a confident swagger. She knew that the road to Vegas was not going to be easy, but she looked forward to nothing more in the world.