Last time I got a scratch card I paid one pound for it, and I won one pound on it. I bought another card with that one pound and subsequently won another one pound. This has happened a number of times to me now.
However, while some of us get stuck in the interminable cycle of ‘investing’ our measly winnings back into another scratch card (that’s how they get you, never forget – the house always wins), there are occasionally people who win big. Really big.
Last year, December 30, 2017, Melissa Ede bought a scratch card, scratched off that weird silvery-grey foil stuff and won £4 million. Easy as that, the lucky so and so.
If, like me, you occasionally play these games and like to dream about what you’d do with your fortune, while simultaneously knowing you’ll (probably) never win, Melissa has spoken about her first year as a millionaire to
rub it in let us all know how it feels.
Prior to becoming a multi-millionaire in an instant, Melissa was a taxi driver in Hull, and had worked from 8am to 4am on Boxing Day before buying the winning card.
Speaking to Hull Live, Melissa said:
To go from having £5 in your bank account is unbelievable.
After splashing out and buying herself a house, a car and an aquarium, Melissa revealed she gives herself a monthly allowance of £6,500, and has also invested a large portion of her winnings.
I could blow it all but where would that leave everybody else?
Out of my winnings, I’ve spent £800,000 – that includes the house, gifting, some donated to charity, cosmetic work and I’ve paid for my teeth.
We set aside £1 million and I invested £3 million of it, which is still invested.
Speaking to the Mirror about her new fortune, the 58-year-old said:
I love life now! All those people who say money doesn’t buy you happiness are talking a load of rubbish.
Melissa revealed her teeth were always a source of discomfort for her, so they were top of the list when it came to spending some of her winnings.
She said at the time:
I don’t like to smile because they are so manky. I’ve decided to show everyone my horrible teeth now – because come January nobody is going to recognise me. It’s going to be a big, perfect smile.
I’m going to have implants, the dentist is planning to pull out 15 teeth and eight roots. I was going to go for the bright, bright white Rylan-style teeth but I’ve gone against that.
I’ve gone with the dentist’s advice, what she feels will look best on me.
With her teeth sorted, Melissa splashed out on gifts for friends and family this year. She initially bought her partner a Harley Davidson, however Melissa had to cancel the order after realising her partner didn’t have a license…
Instead, she bought her a couple of cameras – and a photography studio – to start up a new hobby.
She still loves a scratch card, though, and apparently spends around £30 a week on them, claiming to have an 85 per cent success rate. Old habits die hard, it seems.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.