Monday, October 20, 2008

Girls' Night Out at the Local Casino

My girlfriends and I went to the local casino for a girl's night out last Friday.

It wasn't an extravagant outing since my buffet dinner got comp'd by my high-roller friend. (It always helps to be friends with a platinum cardholding member of the casino's frequent gambler club.) :-D

At the buffet, one thing that struck me was how deprivation made me really appreciate the things I took for granted in the past. Before I resolved to live on a budget, I never thought twice about eating at expensive restauarants on credit. I'm craving steak? I'm going to have a surf-n-turf at Morton's or Ruth's Chris Steakhouse! I'm craving sushi? I'm going to Nobu's, and heck, I'm going to treat my friends because I can! (I guess this explains why I'm currently $13,000 in credit card debt. Sigh.)

Alas, those days are over. Don't get me wrong -- I'm not ruing my former lifestyle. Far from it. Truth be told, I'm actually happier now that I'm living within my means and watching my debt go down while my savings increase, albeit at a snail's pace. (A recent poll also shows that people who plan for their financial future tend to be happier. I'm no exception.)

But I admit that I battle my food cravings on a daily basis to stay within my spartan food budget. In order to stick to my budget, I don't eat sushi or beef anymore. (Taco Bell burritos don't count as beef, by the way.) I also don't eat out much either. (Again, Taco Bell doesn't count.)

At the buffet, I loaded up on all-you-can-eat crab legs, roast beef, mashed potatoes, Chinese food, sushi and crepe. (I know it sounds like a weird combination of food but in my defense, I had to try everything.) The quality of the food was good, but not excellent (since it is a buffet after all). But boooooy, I didn't care. Was it delicious!! (I think it was especially delicious because it was free.)

Since it's been a while since I'd eaten so extravantly, I savored every bite and morsel. And perhaps this may be the best thing about making sacrifices to live within one's means -- I've learned that I can appreciate life's modest indulgences rather than seeking endlessly for the next, higher level of consumption. It's pretty ironic, funny and cool that I've discovered this nugget of wisdom at a casino buffet, a symbol of excessive consumption.


Sharon Rose said...

Hi there-this sounds like a good night out!! the way you chose all these different foods on one plate is how I would go too-I adore food and don't mind variety, more the better, haha!!