Tuesday, September 11, 2007

¿ Wanna bet ?

Spaniards like to gamble:

A los madrileños les gustan el bingo

It could be bingo.

Casino de Madrid, back entrance

A night out at the casino.

state lottery booth

Taking part in the state lottery, in particular, the huge Christmas draw, in which every family in Spain participates. Tickets for this lottery, the biggest of the year (affectionately known as "el gordo", or "the fat one") are a common Christmas gift. Numbers are chosen by photogenically angelic orphans from the St Ildefonso orphanage in Madrid, in a nationally televised ceremony a few days before Christmas. Then there's also the regular ONCE lottery, run by the organisation for the blind.

salon de juegos

One of the many "Salon de Juegos" in downtown Madrid, home to a seizure-inducing array of one-armed bandits and assorted other slot machines.

I don't have statistics to back this up, but it's hard to avoid the conclusion that gambling is one of the more popular Spanish pursuits.

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