I was standing in line at 7-Eleven behind a couple purchasing a lottery ticket for the weekly draw of $50,000.00.
It reminded me of the day I won the lottery.
That’s right, I struck it rich.
I was in a lineup many years ago like the one I was standing in. Just as similar was the conversation about how to spend the millions of dollars coming our way. I remember hearing “I wouldn’t even give my notice, I’d just go in the next day and walk out.”
I had a thought in that lineup, “if I win the lottery, would I leave my job?” I love my position and the work I do. I love my coworkers and the people I serve. If I didn’t do that what would I do?
As the line up moved closer to the till an article in the paper on the rack caught my eye. “Millions of People Displaced” I wasn’t sure what the article was about. I could imagine that millions of people had to leave their homes somewhere in the world because of famine, or a natural disaster, or war. I started to think, “If I win the lottery, would I move to a better place?” I love the community I live in. I love the geography, the lake, the amenities, the small town feel, with proximity to big city treasures. Everything I wanted was at my disposal. I even loved that I had the privilege of complaining about the high cost of utility bills.
If I won the lottery, where would I go, where would I live?
Canada continually ranks as one of the best places in the world to live according to several studies. What are the chances, I’d be born in Canada?
I was feeling good about my chances of winning a lottery where the odds were a mere one in a couple million.
I was sure, if I won the lottery I would remain in Canada.
I was also sure I would remain in Summerland.
I wouldn’t have to learn a new language. The weather is pleasant and I have all my connections and relationships here.
If I did win the lottery, I could have better relationships and better connections. The thought then occurred to me, “who would be my new friends if I won the lottery?”
I loved my friendships. We laugh, we cry, we have a strong bond that only happens with time. Each occasion we shared together builds our history and our future. Did I want to leave all of that?
Things were looking differently the closer I came to the till.
I love what I do. I live in the best place. I have the best relationships.
But if I won the lottery I could have a big beautiful new home by the lake and a new boat. I began to let my mind wonder. Which house by the lake would we buy? We wouldn’t have to move far. We already live a block from the lake. I recalled the hours and how hard we worked to make our house perfect for us. I remembered the many fun evenings with friends and family, the meals we shared, the stories we told in our yard.
I realized I had already won the lottery. By chance and by design, all I ever wanted in a lottery ticket I already possessed. What are the chances?
I left my place in line and went home to count my riches.
Mirjana Komljenovic is a Summerland resident who is proud to live in Canada.