Woman who won the lottery returns to old job washing sheets.

June 18, 2007 6:26am CST
Joanna Gilbert won 1.1 million pounds on the national lottery but has returned to her six pounds an hour job washing sheets in a hospital. She says it's to keep her feet on the ground and because she's worked there for 21 years and it's a big part of her life. You can read the whole story here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/6761927.stm Would you return to such a low paying job after hitting the jackpot? I have to say I probably wouldn't but I admire the woman for doing it, it proves the money hasn't changed her.
13 people like this
33 responses
@bcl_me (583)
• Philippines
18 Jun 07
It was really an interesting story...she already has so much money and yet she still prefers her present life...which she has chosen all her life...and I admire that too. But if I were in her shoes, I'l probably wont but instead, put up some very small but very nice bookstore or coffeeshop that would keep me busy all my life
3 people like this
18 Jun 07
Yes she could start her own laundry business and employ people to wash the sheets for her with all that money, she'd never have to wash another sheet again.
1 person likes this
@murasaki (149)
• Japan
21 Jun 07
I kinda like the small cafe/bookstore idea myself. That's something I would like to do if I had that kind of money.
@mike2003 (287)
• Philippines
18 Jun 07
Wow what a woman! I admire her and at the same time am worried for her..What if some people with some bad minds out there try to kidnap her or try to get the money from her? her safety will will be imperiled but i really admire her for being so humble.
3 people like this
18 Jun 07
I hadn't thought about it like that the news have said what hospital she works at everything, hopefully security there is good.
1 person likes this
@Woodpigeon (3710)
• Ireland
18 Jun 07
Nope, there is no way I would continue that job if I won the lottery. I filled in for a week at a laundry place for an old folks home and it was rough. I was only there one week but my hands split form handling all the wet laundry.
2 people like this
18 Jun 07
yes doing laundry all day is grueling task I'm amazed she still wants to continue to do it when she could just retire.
@Inky261 (2524)
• Germany
18 Jun 07
I can understand that very well. Some people see a job they hold for many years as the backbone of their lives and they feel that the coworkers are family whom one does not betray. Some people like the life they lead and want to keep what they have and only gradually allow changes in their lives. This change comes very gradually, it takes very long to grasp how much money they have won in real money. These winners do not want to make a mistake.
18 Jun 07
Like any big change it must take time to come to terms with getting that rich that quickly, maybe she will retire later when she naturally would have anyway.
1 person likes this
@easy888 (10405)
• Australia
18 Jun 07
Hello,nancyrowina,if i win the 1.1million jackpot,i will take a month off and then back to work again,i will have notohing to do it i quit my job,all i do may just be spending money all the day and the money will be gone quickly,that is why i will try to have normal life even i win the jackpot.
18 Jun 07
it makes sense to try and save the money, but you could live off the interest alone if you invested it wisely and still never work again.
@easy888 (10405)
• Australia
18 Jun 07
But if you do not work,you may probably find it hard to live off interest.
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
Yes she needs something to occupy her time and she enjoys her job why not carry on working?
• United States
23 Jun 07
I don't know about washing sheets but I've thought about going to nursing school if I ever won the lotto and being a nurse a few days a week. A million isn't a whole lot either - though it would be enough for me to quit my job - and maybe she's afraid she'll go through it too fast.
1 person likes this
23 Jun 07
It's enough to pay off your mortgage or buy yourself a house at least. having that would mean enough security to give up the job, and start her own company doing whatever she wanted if she was wise.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Jun 07
Oh I agree with you. But I think some people are too afraid to do those things themselves. If I won that money I would build a nice modest house with some land and still be sitting pretty :) I'd also invest some of it too.
@murasaki (149)
• Japan
21 Jun 07
That's a great story. If I had that kind of money, I'm more likely to quit my current job and live pretty much anywhere I want to. I admire that she returned to her low-paying job and it shows that money is not that important to her. If she loves what she had been doing for more than 20 years, then more power to her!
21 Jun 07
You have to admire her for it too it's a very modest and down to earth thing to do.
@sunshinecup (7881)
18 Jun 07
My husband swears, if we ever won the lottery he wouldn't quit his job. He said his work gives him such pride, no amount of money could replace it. So I can understand this woman.
1 person likes this
19 Jun 07
there are better jobs for gaining pride than washing sheets in a hospital though surely? She could do whatever he wanted now even as a volunteer ans still be alright for money.
@vokey9472 (1489)
• United States
18 Jun 07
I would most likely keep working. Especially if I liked my job. Also, you have to have something to do with yourself during the day. Once my son is in school, I am going back to work full time. I would be bored to tears in a matter of days if I didn't have something to do with my time. So, even if I had a ton of money, I would have a job.
1 person likes this
19 Jun 07
If you really enjoy your job there's no need to give it up, but remember this woman washes sheets in a hospital!
• Canada
18 Jun 07
it's good for her. I think everyone should have some kind of job because if you don't have a job it makes life kinda pointless. I mean what would you do all day when you have a maid and you live in a big house. it might just lead to depression. consider old retired people. those who keep busy still give off a young vibe and that's why i think you should always keep busy no matter what age you are.
1 person likes this
19 Jun 07
There are hundreds of things you can do if you don't work and have money, she could start a hobby or charity, anything she wanted.
@Anniedup (3652)
• Richards Bay, South Africa
18 Jun 07
No I'm afraid I won't but I admire her for what she is doing or maybe it will still take awhile to sink in. We should check up on her in 6 months time or when she has a fight with her boss! lol!
1 person likes this
@rosie_123 (6118)
18 Jun 07
Oh my - no I would not! LOL! I hate getting up early and working - I would be out of there as soon as the cheque had cleared. Actually I tend to get annoyed with people who do stuff like this....... firstly she is doing a job she obviously doesn't need for financial reasons, thereby taking the job away from someone who really does need it, and that doesn't seem fair to me. Also I just can't believe the mindset of someone who has all that cash and can't find other things to do with their time. If it weighs so heavily on their hands........ how about voluntary work with children, the elderly, the sick or animals - whichever her interest is, or doing something far more interesting than work like travelling, learning a new langage, trying to write a novel - so many things. I would be a much more deserving winner! LOL!
19 Jun 07
it does seem kind of sad she doesn't have more ambition and imagination there's so much she could do now and she just wants to wash sheets.
1 person likes this
@derek_a (10902)
18 Jun 07
I would think that it would depend on what her life and work meant to her personally. It is true there is nothing quite so grounding as menial work and wining a huge amount of money can be very stressful. For example, gardening can be a great stress buster. But some lottery winners would probably employ a gardener. Personally what I enjoy about my work is that the satisfaction is a reward in itself and I doubt that I would ever give up. Many of the super-rich must think this way too, because they continue to work and their fortunes exceed a lottery win. :-)
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
Yes I suppose it depends on how much job satisfaction you have and what motivates you to work, I don't think I'd take much satisfaction from doing a hospitals laundry I'd only do it for the money, but perhaps it's not about that maybe she has friends there.
• Canada
18 Jun 07
Yeah she is real good person and do admire her but if i have won such a huge amount of money i would have opened some business which can give employment to others and also i love to open school and college which can give better education to new generation... education is most important. Keeping money in bank is not ideal for me.
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
I'd like to do something for others if I won a large sum of money too,I'd probably donate a lot to charities.
@wolfie34 (26793)
• United Kingdom
18 Jun 07
Wow, you certainly don't get many like her, and she's a real credit, my only hope is that her employers respect her and appreciate her, still if they step out of line she can always stick her two fingers up! But to be honest a lot of us would find it boring, not having to work and finding things to fill up our days, she's very modest and that is the type of person you want as a friend. So many people now are only interested in money, and so many people waste what they win, it's good to see a great win going to someone like her for a change.
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
If I won all that money I'd find things to do with my days I'm sure. It's only apart time job mind you so she could still take up some new hobbies.
@Idlewild (6105)
• United States
18 Jun 07
It makes sense, especially is the job means a lot to her and she has friends there, etc. And it's good to keep grounded; lots of lottery winners lose their heads and jump into a lavish lifestyle, spend all their money, get into arguments with friends and familiy over money, and end up poor and unhappy... worse off than before they won the money.
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
Yes I know someone who got a large sum of money in compensation for an accident he had and he says it's the worst thing that ever happened to him. He got burgled and people stole off him and took advantage continuously until the money was all gone.
@dbhattji (2507)
• India
18 Jun 07
Now she can work to keep busy, and for satisfaction that she gets from working. It is more fun working this way when you are not under pressure to make a living or making ends meet.
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
How can washing sheets be fun? maybe she enjoys the social side of it and is friends with the staff.
@eden32 (3976)
• United States
18 Jun 07
I like to think I'd continue to work my job if I ever won the lottery. I really enjoy what I do and I think that I help people. I wouldn't want having money to change who I am and what I value.
1 person likes this
18 Jun 07
If you enjoy your job then you shouldn't have to give it up this woman says she loves her work, I just understand how anyone can love washing hospital sheets for a living.
@vhansen (2035)
• United States
21 Jun 07
No,I wouldn't either.But then I guess she had alot of friends there and after 21 years she was probably close to retirement,might as well finish out and collect.Me,I think instead of staying in my job I'd use the money to start my own business.I've always wanted to run a cozy little cafe' of some sort so I think I'd do that.
@franziska (411)
• Italy
19 Jun 07
I would return to my job also If I won a big sum that's because I wouldn't know what to do all day long if I didn't work. I mean it could be very boring to live without having an activity