Finding my mah jongg set

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mah jongg set

I learned how to play Mah Jongg about 5 years ago by taking Leah’s course at the adult community center, Mainline School Night. I decided to buy a Mah Jongg set so I could play with the women I met in the class. Even though both my grandmothers played Mah Jongg, somehow their Mah Jongg sets got lost among all the family heirlooms, so I began my search to buy a new set.

I went first to the local shopping malls and visited several game stores in the Philadelphia area that sold Mah Jongg sets. Then I searched on-line and found several websites that sold Mah Jongg sets. But nothing caught my eye. So I asked my mom whether she knew of any stores near Boca Raton, Florida, where she lived that sold Mah Jongg sets and luckily she did.

Mom mentioned that the large inside flea market, Festival on Sample Road in Pompano Beach, Florida had a vendor that sold Mah Jongg merchandise. So the next time I visited my parents for a long weekend, we went to the flea market.

And there was the MahJongg set I was searching for all along. Its outside case had an old fashion map of the countries of the world. I loved the case immediately and bought it because it symbolized what I like to do in my leisure time, besides playing Mah Jongg, and that is to travel and explore the world and learn about other cultures and their history.

So tell us on our Facebook page or in one of our member community forums about how you acquired your Mah Jongg Set. We would love to hear your story and share it.

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  1. Laoshi Sue  April 25, 2015

    I have several sets from various sites including Where the Winds Blow near Houston. My Asian set came from China; our group kept a sharp eye out for sets as I had requested and finally made a decision to just take one (most looked the same everywhere we went). I bought the set which was very very heavy and wagged it through 3 airports in China and 2 here in the USA because it was too heavy for my suitcase. I’d try to set in on someone’s rolling carry on when I could.

    Because of our military base here in San Angelo we have a couple of Asian stores here in west Texas. Lo and behold, after toting that heavy case of BIG BIG tiles, I see in a few months that my favorite Asian store has now decided to stock a mah jongg set and their new one in stock is the exact same set as mine, down to the same case and sells for exactly what I paid. Is that not a hoot? Then after getting home I had researched for some time and had discovered that in Beijing and again in Hong Kong I actually was just around the corner from a place where one could buy tiles made to order — oh well, it’s okay. I have a good story.

    One of my students also brought me a set from a market in China and I treasure it; a customer of my daughter’s brought her a small set from China as well. I keep both of those on hand. Then of course I had to buy the Red Hat set from Where the Winds Blow when it appeared on the scene. My first purchase was what I call “the Barbie set” which is a beautiful pink and we had lots of Barbie in our home for about 20 years. I bought all 3 of my daughters that set but I keep one of those here with me. I’ve sold 4 of my sets recently because about 3 years ago I was given the automatic table by my girls and husband on our 50th wedding anniversary and I really only use my other 3 sets to take with me when I go elsewhere to teach this wonderful game. I still laugh about the Asian set though. Besides, can one every really have too many sets?

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