Could you do it? Embark on a random holiday, with every move determined by fate, fortune, and the roll of a dice? Intrepid at adventurer Matt Cleary could. And did.

"Over breakfast we jotted down six transport options and corresponding numbers:
1 – Fly; 2 – Drive; 3 – Train; 4 – Hike; 5 – Bike; 6 – Boat."

When reviewing Luke Rhinehart’s cult ’70s novel The Dice Man – the story of a man who lets a roll of the dice guide his decisions in life – The Christian Science Monitor, an august US journal, editorialised: “Inevitably Chance becomes a god and dice a religion. [Dice-living] is an unpleasant notion whose time has come.”

Alarmed religious leaders shouldn’t have worried quite so much. Dice living never did take over the world, but it does have some merit. And so one Saturday morning, unsure how to spend our weekend, my girlfriend and I planned an impromptu trip – with dice deciding everything. How we’d travel, where we’d go, and what we’d do when we got there. Zany, but true.

Over breakfast we jotted down six transport options and corresponding numbers: 1 – Fly; 2 – Drive; 3 – Train; 4 – Hike; 5 – Bike; 6 – Boat. And so we cast our die. It rolled around the table, bumped off the coffee plunger and decreed that we would travel . . . (somewhere) . . . by . . . train!

Alrighty. Train: conveyance of the ages, star of films featuring David Niven, charming, rustic, romantic, train. We packed our bags and with visions of The Orient Express and waiters with little moustaches bringing us whiskey, arrived at Sydney Central Station like two excited kids shirking school.
 

The die was cast again and we found ourselves boarding the 9:45 to . . . Gosford!

We scanned the departures board and wrote down six destinations: 1 – Mudgee; 2 – Wollongong; 3 – Bowral; 4 – Katoomba; 5 – Goulburn; 6 – Gosford. The die was cast again and we found ourselves boarding the 9:45 to . . . Gosford!

Jewel of the NSW Central Coast, Gateway to Terrigal, town of men and the women who know them. Granted, this wasn’t the Orient Express for Budapest via Prague – but whatever! Reckless with freedom and its possibilities, we broached our contraband Shiraz (hey, we were on holiday, and reckless), juggled plastic cups with biscuits and cheeses . . . and were away.

Halfway there and feeling no pain we rolled for accommodation. Would it be: 1 – Motel; 2 – Hotel; 3 – B&B; 4 – Backpacker (oh please, no); 5 – Caravan; 6 – Serviced apartment? And it’s . . . a six! Through the magic of mobile phone yellow pages we were tipped onto Sails, right near Terrigal Beach. “Spa room, sir?” enquired reception. “But of course,” I replied, recklessly. A slow bus from Gosford later and we were quaffing vino and cheese on the balcony, toasting Abudantia, goddess of luck.

And rolled . . . another six! But we didn’t want to go kayaking so we rolled again for . . . golf! But stuff golf too, so we rolled again, and again, until we lay on the beach as Abudantia intended.

Hungry, our dice decreed fish ’n’ chips, and from a handy Things To Do In Terrigal brochure we viewed our afternoon options: 1 – Lie on beach; 2 – Go fish; 3 – Bet on horses in pub; 4 – Surf lesson; 5 – Golf; 6 – Kayaks. And rolled . . . another six! But we didn’t want to go kayaking so we rolled again for . . . golf! But stuff golf too, so we rolled again, and again, until we lay on the beach as Abudantia intended. And that is how we spent the next few hours.

Beer o’clock saw us retire to the Terrigal Hotel – a breezy pub where the locals wear thongs and there are pictures of men holding fish. Another decision was required: dinner. 1 – Seafood; 2 – Chinese; 3 – Indian; 4 – Pizza; 5 – Thai; 6 – Steak. And it came up . . . seafood! We showered and strolled off to Beeches on Ocean View Drive where we feasted on oysters, flathead and cold Semillon.

We knocked off the rest of the red plonk and cheese, and gave the dice one more chance to shine.

After coffee we rolled again: evens for a cocktail at the Crowne Plaza’s Florida Beach Bar, odds for an ice cream. Luckily a rolled three found us licking gelato rather than bumping uglies with the Central Coast’s looking-for-short-term-love set, all of whom seemed to be at Florida. 
 

1 – Go shopping; 2 – Visit a local art gallery; 3 – Go snorkelling; 4 – Lie on the beach again; 5 – Play tennis; 6 – Get jiggy.

“Six, six, gimme a six, gimme a six,” I pleaded with Abudantia before rolling the die like a snake-eyed Vegas crap shooter on the make for a new pair of shoes. But Abudantia forsook me.

The next day we rolled for who would make coffee (me), who would get the paper and breakfast (me) and who should supply a post-breakfast massage (me). After said services, we decided on whether we should: 1 – Go shopping; 2 – Visit a local art gallery; 3 – Go snorkelling; 4 – Lie on the beach again; 5 – Play tennis; 6 – Get jiggy.

“Six, six, gimme a six, gimme a six,” I pleaded with Abudantia before rolling the die like a snake-eyed Vegas crap shooter on the make for a new pair of shoes. But Abudantia forsook me.

I rolled a one. It would be shopping. In Terrigal. Great. What were we going to buy? Zinc cream? A towel? Four fried chickens and a coke? We wandered up and down the main drag, me morose like a kid shopping for school clothes, Kylie finding something interesting in every window of every shop in Terrigal.

Then we: had another swim, had a cold chardonnay at the pub, checked out of Sails, bussed it back to Gosford, caught the 4:12 to Sydney, knocked off the rest of the red plonk and cheese, and gave the dice one more chance to shine. Its options were: 1 – Taxi home; 2 – Taxi home; 3 – Taxi home; 4 – Taxi home; 5 – Taxi home; 6 – Taxi home.

Taxi home won. All hail Abudantia,

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