In the fall, Meleah and I had hours-long chat fests as we were getting to know each other (oh, who am I kidding? we still do that). In any case, we exchanged lots of information, kind of like when you move into your dorm during the first week of freshman year of college. You all of a sudden feel to need to explain exactly who everyone in your life is and what their deal is, as well as any and all important (and ridiculously unimportant) events that have hereto brought you to the current, friend-making moment.
Nothing is quite like freshman year of college. Later in life, you often ease into relationships slowly, building friendships over time and meeting one person one week or month, and another later: it’s never all at once. But when you move somewhere completely new, on your own, and away from everything and everyone you know and depend on, you form friendships much more quickly than in ‘real life.’ Moving to Ljubljana was one of those freshman-in-college moments.
In any case, I keep random factoids stored in my brain. So does Meleah. And we both remembered them at Christmas. For example, she bought me feet pajamas. Bright red. Lovely. Now I have feet pajamas because it gets super cold in our apartment and I can pad about the place now without having go complete the arduous task for putting on slippers. Life is rough.
And I–I was walking through Mueller, a German chain, in December, when I saw it: Slovenian Monopoly. I remembered Meleah saying she loved playing Monopoly and no one every wanted to play with her. So, into my basket went Slovenia Monopoly.
All the locations are different. Board Walk is replaced with Portorož, a seaside town in Slovenia. Chance cards are all written in Slovenian. The money is different colors, and in different denominations. Lucky for us, we didn’t need to read the instructions in Slovenian because we knew them by heart.
Correction: Meleah knew them by heart. In a strange twist, I realized I’d only ever played Monopoly Junior, so the whole mortgage, multiple houses and hotels, etc. was a bit much to take in. Blame it on being the oldest, and being nearly a decade older than my youngest sibling: who else would have played Monopoly with me?
Another thing I discovered: real Monopoly takes a heck of a lot longer to play than Monopoly Junior (go figure). I am, apparently, more suited to the time frame that it takes to play the latter. We had to pause our game half-way through, leaving the pieces set up, and continue another day. It was both exciting and lovely and incredibly time-consuming in a makes-me-antsy kind of way.
In any case, I botched my first real shot at playing Monopoly. I bought so many properties at first that I owned a huge chunk of the board and then had almost no money. Lucky for me, Meleah hadn’t bought quite as much, so I didn’t have to spend my money… and then I won a major jackpot of a free parking pay-out, put hotels on all my properties, and forced Meleah to mortgage all the properties she’d accumulated when I’d been broke… and then she went bankrupt.
Not bad for someone whose main experience with the game included several heated games of the version with the words “Junior” tacked on the end 10 years ago.
Now, if only I’d been wearing my feet pajamas when I won…