Dad Teaches His Companion to Play Craps

Last week dad’s card-playing companion brought some cards and a Yahtzee game with her when she went for her visit with dad. Dad said he wasn’t interested in playing cards or Yahtzee. The companion tried something creative. She took out the dice from the Yahtzee game.

“Did you ever play any games with dice?”, she asked him? Now he was in his element. He told her that he used to play Craps when he was a kid. She didn’t know how to play Craps. She asked dad to teach her.

Here I will inject a little bit of history. Dad grew up during the depression. He lived in a tenement building with his many brothers and sisters. They spent their days on the streets. Dad played craps in the streets with the other boys and was often chased by the cops. Perhaps that was illegal gambling? In any case, he learned a skill that he has retained for the following 80 years!

Dad’s companion had located a room that was used for the residents to put together puzzles. There were tables in the room where they could play games. Dad just wanted to sit on the sofa, but his companion sat at the table.

They used checkers as chips. Dad knew the rules and she wrote them into her iPad as they played. She threw the dice and told dad the total. He would then yell out “win”, “lose” or “roll again”. She said he was serious and gave it his full attention – totally engaged.

Then one of the men who sometimes works in the kitchen came in the room and chatted with them about games. Dad described the kind of rummy he played as a kid – in detail. The activity director then came by and brought dad his Scotch as it was Happy Hour.

I am very pleased with the creativity of dad’s companions.  They are able to get dad to reach far back into his memory and bring back skills he hasn’t used in decades.  I hope I am able to follow up on all of this when I get home.  I got too used to thinking I already knew all about dad, when clearly there was more to know.



About letstalkaboutfamily

I am a retired and was the primary caregiver for both my parents before they passed. I have children and grandchildren. This blog is an attempt to connect with other caregivers and share ideas and experiences. I hope you will let me know what worked for you if you had an experience similar to mine. The main issues I am going to talk about are elder care, death and dying, assisted living, family relationships and hoarders and hoarding. Other topics will come up as I address the issues and my relationship with other family members.
This entry was posted in Alzheimer's Disease, Caregiving, Companion, Dementia, Elder Care, Eldercare and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Dad Teaches His Companion to Play Craps

  1. terry1954 says:

    I love to play Yahtzee. I have never played craps. I always look forward to your blogs. I have always felt a connection. Maybe it is because both of our loved ones are in nursing care

    • Thanks, Terry. Me too. We are both caring for a loved one. I used to play Yahtzee with my children while they were growing up, but not lately. I never played craps either and I was surprised dad remembered how. I looked it up on Google and found there are Vegas rules, so I guess it is played by a lot of people now.

  2. Kathy says:

    How wonderful that your dad remembered fun games from his youth. I’ve never played craps, only Yahtzee.

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