Now that Tropical Storm Bill has moved on – taking its rain and wind with it, but leaving the street flooding, thank you very much – I can get back to what I’ve been thinking about nonstop. And that’s how to get myself a pot full of money so I can get us back to Vegas!
I’m not a Vegas kind of girl. I didn’t think I was. I’m an outgoing introvert who likes her sleep, so, naturally, a city full of big crowds and things you constantly need to be do-do-doing while never, ever sleeping, really didn’t sound like my thing, no? But my guy had been about a dozen different times and wanted to show me one of his playgrounds and a vacation with him anywhere sounded fun, so off we went!
A few things surprised me about Vegas.
Our high end digs. We stayed at The Cosmopolitan, the nicest, poshest, most luxe hotel on The Strip. No, really! We hotel hopped quite a bit, touring the other casinos and seeing what was going on. The Cosmo had a fantastically curated, wild art collection on display. Giant high heeled shoes, a three-story Chandelier bar, old-timey black and white canvases of old school Vegas, sculptures, old-fashioned cigarette vending machines, a high-end marble floor with shimmery bits in it that sparkled, and glam and glitz hanging from the ceiling every time you turned around. And our room…oh my god, you guys. The light fixtures were luxe. The bed was made for movie stars to lounge in. The living room was straight out of a couture magazine. The walk in glass-and-marble shower was bigger than my master suite back home! And the soaker tub that sat right in front of a huge (tinted) glass window…I needs me one. Seriously. I didn’t want to venture out to explore the city, our room was so nice! Our balcony overlooked the fountain display in front of The Bellagio hotel. A few of my friends told me to make sure I saw it, and to make sure I went back to see it again if I didn’t like the music. I got to watch every single show I wanted because we were right there. Talk about romantic…
Once we did venture out, I was surprised by how far away everything was. We toured a bunch of other hotels like I said – The Flamingo, the Bellagio, Caesar’s Palace, Planet Hollywood, Paris, the Aria, New York, New York, and Mandelay Bay – and while everything looks like it’s right there, I’ve decided they made everything so oversized and bright and flashy to lure you in, like a fly to a bugzapper. You start walking that way, commit, and then die on your way because each resort is at least a half-mile away from each other. You make it to the end of the The Strip (or at least the furthest you can walk, not the real end), stop for lunch at Margaritaville, and then have to have a few top shelf margaritas to trick yourself into walking back again!
The casinos. I’m not much into gambling. To me, it feels like throwing away a good, sure thing. I’m not always tight-fisted about my money, but usually I am. And while I don’t mind parting with my money for a bit of entertainment, $20 to spend less than ten minutes pushing a button just isn’t my thing. But the even more surprising thing about the casinos was the smell. You guys, I swear to god the casinos smelled like President Snow was lurking around the next corner. There was this cloying death-smell everywhere, like too ripe roses and over-sweet melons had a baby or something. I couldn’t even stay at Caesar’s Palace because it was so strong there. The Cosmo was better about it, as was Planet Hollywood. The others? Oof.
The crazies. I was surprised we didn’t see more of them. While we waited in line for a show, we saw some falling down drunk guys who were so wasted, I was afraid one of them might hurl in our direction. But for the most part, they were free entertainment! Sadly, they didn’t stick around very long. The soberish ones kept the couldn’t-stand-up-ones moving, hopefully back towards a room. Or a toilet of some kind. Because whoa. And then while we were in one of the casinos, we heard a lady behind us demanding her mothereffing money. We thought she was just being loud and obnoxious, but she kept getting louder and we eventually turned around. She had her boyfriend? friend? stranger? by his hair and kept demanding her mothereffing money. A really old security guy came trotting over not too long after that, and soon it escalated into six cops and the casino manager. The lady refused to let go of the guy’s fro unless he was in handcuffs or she had her voucher back. Apparently, she hit it big and he grabbed the ticket. And she wasn’t haven’t any of it. She told everyone to check the tapes, check her blood alcohol level, whatever they wanted, but she was getting her money. I was sad we didn’t get to see the end of the “show.”
The airport. My first Southwest experience on the way out there was relatively uneventful. The smaller airport in our metroplex didn’t disappoint (there are rumors), though we did have to walk about five miles from the parking garage. And there was this fantastic New York native behind us (we scored the best seats – BOTH WAYS – for the win!) who schooled a Texas gun nut, which was awesome. The New York guy showed up again on our return flight and recognized us, and us him, and it was kind of funny. And awesome because I got to congratulate him on his victory. Oh, also, I recognized one of our cabbies as being a northerner because he said something was “full of bologna” and so I had to ask and turns out he was from Jersey. Heh. But the real surprise was how close the Vegas airport was to The Strip! I mean, it’s right there! You could almost walk, it was right there. (There I go with underestimating distance again.) Very handy, I suppose, being right next to where everyone’s going. Guess I’m just used to airports being out away from everything, mine being next to work notwithstanding.
I have so much more to tell you about – the shows we saw, the pools we spent half our time at, how we spent one morning walking our entire hotel to find a place open for breakfast only to find the mother of all buffets open right next to the elevators (whoops), but those will have to wait.
Real life beckons.
I want to go back.