We have such a nice Bridge Center in my city. I know as a writer I should never use the word "nice" because it's considered abhorrent and lazy to choose this word over, say, "amiable" or "pleasant." But "nice" really seems to sum it up, because while the people are amiable and the atmosphere pleasant, the whole place is just plain nice.
The other day Danny, one of our NLM players, was being celebrated as Rookie of the Month and everyone brought in the most scrumptious array of foodstuffs - baked chicken salad like you've never tasted before in your life, mouth-watering blueberry cobbler, delectable deviled eggs, and chewy, fudgey brownies. And to convey to you how nice everyone is, no one got (too) upset when our food table went missing. It seems the Life Master group had "borrowed" it on which to put their foodstuffs for their Christmas party. Not a problem, we made do with several bridge tables slung together.
Before the game began Danny was honored and her partner stood to say a few words. She said when she first started playing at the Bridge Center she was wary. She hadn't had a good experience at her former bridge facility and said, that among other things, "I was strongly reprimanded for what they called 'fondling' the bidding card." (She said she did not, however, have to register as a card offender, so that was the upside).
But she began to tear up as she talked about recently losing her husband and how warm and welcomed she has felt at our center and how lucky she was to be able to play with one of the very nicest people, Danny. It made me appreciate the community that is our Bridge Center.
Just last week one of our own was taken quite ill and is now in the hospital for an indeterminate amount of time. We have been kept up to date on his condition, have scheduled times to visit him and have sent him a card with our love and best wishes. I've seen people jump out of their chairs to help someone who's having trouble maneuvering through the maze of tables in our room. I've heard (most) people say "good try" even when you go down.
What I'm trying to say is that our Bridge Center is more than the game. It transcends the winning and losing. It's nice.