Trotting to Victory: A Traveler’s Wager.

Fortune favours the bold!

Fortune favours the bold!

A seasoned backpacker tells of a Hail Mary moment in the land downunder!

I’ve been backpacking around the world for about two years, and I finally made it down to Australia about two months ago. It’s been a long, strange trip but it’s been completely memorable and always worthwhile. But after long enough on the road without any source of income, it can get more than a little tricky to manage finances.

It really was just bad timing. I’d always wanted to go to Australia, ever since seeing Skippy the Bush Kangaroo on TV (I’m from Scotland, where it was always played on the tube). But the minute I arrived, my finances were completely drained. Maybe it was the 24/7 partying and eating out, but the bank balance was looking slimmer every time the cash machine rolled out its tiny printed statement. It was truly worrying.

When you’re down to your last few thousand dollars, every purchase counts. You need money for the trip home, and from Australia that was never to be cheap. I sat down one night and calculated that I’d have to leave in a week according to my finances. But t just didn’t feel as though the trip was over. I dined on instant noodles and pondered my options.

Later that night, a German friend, Tomas, approached me and mentioned that he’d heard I was going home soon. We went out to the deck for a beer, as the front doors of the hostel were about to close. After an hour of chit-chat, Tomas blurted out that he thought I should gamble a bit and see how I came out. It wasn’t a bad idea really; I had a little of money left to lose, enough to wager and come out on top. But I didn’t really gamble, or know anything about gambling. Tomas said it didn’t matter, that back home he’d used a subscription to a service which informed him how to bet. In most cases, he’d done alright.

That night, I cruised around online for the best and most thorough seeming information service. One name, Practical Punting , kept coming up on Australian forums. It was interesting and simple enough for me to understand, and I liked the way they made it so easy to figure out what to do. I purchased a subscription that night.

I spent the next day researching, reading and making hypothetical bets on the horses using a bit of the information provided by the service. And wouldn’t you know it, I ended up a couple of thousand hypothetical dollars up. I resolved to try out my luck the next day, using real cash.

At midday the next day I laid my first bet at the local TAB around the corner. It was a nerve wracking and pulsep unding few hours, but by 5pm that night I was up by a few thousand, more than enough to keep my Australian trek alive. I was elated and relieved not to have to call it quits so soon. It’s not a certain thing, and it takes more than a bit of luck, but Practical Punting is the best friend you might have if you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain by making a well informed bet!

About David

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