I began playing duplicate in the late 60s when you mailed in the .05 fractionals each month. In 1975 my first son was born I took a 36 year hiatus from bridge. My wife and I returned in late 2011 and, boy, things were different. Bridgemates and bidding boxes now exist. Even the scoring system had been altered for non-vulnerable doubles. Bidding pretty much needed to be relearned - especially competitive bidding. Even, more significantly, were all the stratifications and events designed for players with a lower number of masterpoints. Living then and now in the Northern Virginia area, I vividly recall games in the early 70 where Kit Woolsey and Steve Robinson were at table1 and before the round was over you would also meet the Kivel's, Cappelletti's, Steve and Peggy Parker, the Gookins, Bobby Lipsitz, Walt Walvick, Henry Bethe and many other stars. Our chances of cashing were only slightly north of zero - but it was fun. My wife and I made life master (500 point style) in 2013 having won multiple Gold Rush events and multiple bracketed swiss events. I passed 1000 points in 2015 and my wife should easily get there in 2016. We are able to attend 6-7 Regionals each year with Raleigh being the furthest away. A couple of club games here can be almost as strong as some Regional Open pairs - we play occasionally in one of them. I thank Kevin O'Brien in introducing me to this site.
Plus... it's free!