Last Friday was the anniversary of my 21st birthday. I have reached the age Taylor Swift idealizes and laments in her infamous song. A group of nine friends and I headed to Atlantic City, where we stayed at the Showboat Hotel and Casino, got dinner at The House of Blues, and later, went to Club Dusk, since we had already tried Harrah’s Pool After Dark on our last visit. My mom also stopped by at dinner to say hello, drop off gifts, then left to meet up with a friend. Other than it being my birthday, being surrounded by great people, and being in a fun atmosphere, the epitome of my night was crossing an item of my bucket list that I have wanted to try for a long time now: riding a mechanical bull.
“Are you ready to ride the bull?!” my friends kept asking as we headed to the Mountain Bar at Bally’s, where Atlantic City’s mechanical bull is located. Last year, we tried to ride the bull, but by the time we reached the bar, it had already closed. As I walked up to the woman with the waver form, I expected I would be told to wait in the long line that appeared to surround the bull. But after I signed the waver, she looked at me, smiled, and said, “Alright, you’re next!”
As one of the clumsiest girls known to man, I did not expect to have a very long ride on the bull, a prediction that wound up being accurate. Even so, my two seconds or so riding the bull was a blast and after I got off, I continued to shout, “THAT WAS THE BEST MOMENT OF MY LIFE!” It was so great, that somehow, I wound up trying to ride the bull one more time and stayed on a bit longer the second time around. I know in the video, the bull appears ridiculously tame, but trust me, it was harder to hold on than it looks like in the video. I had talked about crossing this item off my bucket list for months. “I’m a college student. It shouldn’t be so hard to find a mechanical bull,” I thought. Finally, my dreams came true.
In general, I had a wonderful birthday. In a recent blog post, I wrote about how my grandfather passed away while I was studying abroad in Australia. While it may have been a fluke, early in the afternoon of my birthday on my way to class, I looked down and noticed that my phone had randomly selected my grandfather’s happy birthday message from last year. Of course, this sight brought a smile to my face and when I called my parents back a few minutes later, I couldn’t help but start crying. I hadn’t thought to listen to the message since he passed away and noticed that I had also saved his message from the year before that as well, so it was a nice birthday surprise to hear his voice again.
My grandma and grandpa used to love going to Atlantic City together, so when I told my aunt what had happened, she said she hoped they brought us luck at the casinos. While my friends and I did not wind up gambling, my dad asked my mom to play a round of roulette for him. When she went up to the table, she told the dealer she had absolutely no idea how to play roulette. The dealer told her he would help her, so she placed three chips down worth $20. On her first try, she wound up winning $180 and though the money was for my dad, it was another nice birthday surprise!
So has anyone ridden a mechanical bull before or hopes to cross this item off his or her bucket list? I’d love to hear about your experiences!