Many Mah Jongg players have been playing with the same group of people for years. Maybe they started when their little ones were truly little and it was their one night out. As the family matured and grew so did they players. They shared the trials and tribulations of raising a family, the ups and downs of the economy and perhaps job changes, car purchases, new furniture and maybe even a new home purchase or a move.
Maybe the ladies around the table may not have started out as your closest friends but after playing steadily every week the same time of the day the same day of the week, everyone knew everyone else’s demeanor and quirks. So if something was off they all knew it. I grew up with such an example in my home. So when I married and then moved around I looked and found a Mah Jongg group wherever I went. While my kids were still in school I got involved in the Parent-Teacher Association or in the classroom. But something for me was always finding a regular group to play MJ.
A couple of years ago I moved again. This time I found it harder to find people to play with for some reason. Perhaps because I was looking to play in the daytime and a lot more women are working these days so they only have evenings available here. Personally I work at home and therefore can be flexible with my schedule and i like to play during the day. A friend gave me the name of a teacher at one of the Temples and I called her to inquire about MJ and then she gave me the name of someone and I ended up being invited to meet this group. It is almost two years since I first met this group of ladies. I am the young kid of the group and they so remind me of my mom and her MJ ladies. They are caring and friendly and they are full of compassion. They play to have fun and to be social. They want to learn how to become better players and they talk about books and travel.
I play in a second group one evening a week. I am really a sub during the winter when one of their regular players heads to Florida to escape the cold winters. These ladies have played together for many many years — there is a history. In the very beginning, sometimes I felt like the outsider but everyone worked hard to be friendly and it has turned into a fun evening and more importantly good fast competitive play.
Recently my dad has been ill and I have had to travel to Florida to see him. These ladies, these Mah Jongg players, these friends have been nothing but supportive. To me this is what playing Mah Jongg is all about. A camaraderie like no other. They offer a sounding board, they offer wisdom and they offer just themselves. I feel lucky.Share