Tuesday, August 3, 2010

What I Learned in Vegas...

Las Vegas, known to some as Sin City, has a lot to offer.  The hotels are enormous, the Strip is packed, the lights are as glitterful as a bedazzled jean jacket on crack, and the experiences are one in a lifetime.  This is what I learned in Vegas:
1. Nothing is as close as it looks: If a hotel, casino, or restaurant looks like it is 1 block away, think again!  It will be a good 20 minute walk in 100 degree heat and probably further than just a block (take the bus!).

2. Escort services do not care that he is married: You can walk hand in hand with your hubby and they will still snap their cards and HAND him one. But, if you look them in the eye, wave your finger in their faces and with your sweet-southern drawl say "No, no" and they will ignore your husband. :)

3. SheMales: Trannies look the same in Vegas as they do anywhere else in the world, and regardless of how many times I see one, I will always stare. Sorry!

4. Time change: Las Vegas is 3 hours behind NC. If you travel with Barrett, it does not matter what time of day it is in Las Vegas, he will inform you of the NC time also. For instance if you say, "I'm so hungry and it's only 9 o'clock, let's go get breakfast." He will respond, "Well, it's actually noon in North Carolina, so let's just get lunch." - I'm sorry but ordering a Philly Cheesesteak at 9 am is not okay regardless of where you are and what time zone you are from!

5. When you are playing Roulette, put money down before going to the bathroom: We played Roulette throughout our whole trip - one big winner's advice was to pick a number and play that everytime (this guy had stacks of chips, if I'm going to listen to anyone, it's him). So, I pick my favorite driver's number, Kasey Kahne number 9. I spend well over $75 picking this number over several hours and when does it finally pay off? When I go to the bathroom and don't have any chips sitting on that number, go figure.

6. Finish your drink: Before you try to get on one of the transit buses, be sure to finish that $4 bottle of water that you just bought, because you will not be allowed to bring it on the bus. Needless to say, we continued to make this mistake until the last day.

7. You don't "lose" money in Vegas:  Even though you put money down and may lose a game here and there it does pay off.  No, I don't mean that you will win big!  I mean, count the number of top shelf drinks you had (if you can still count that high at the end of the night), figure up the total, and you probably spent less in the Casino...Ca-Ching!   Which makes me wonder: Drinks are free when you're gambling, so WHY would you order a Bud Light when you can have a Crown and coke?  People never cease to amaze me :)

Monday, August 2, 2010

Vegas Baby!

Our Vegas Experience, in a nutshell:

Monday - Arrive at Charlotte-Douglass Airport at 2pm. Flight is delayed 2 hours due to thunderstorms in Atlanta (our connector flight). We're both thinking, "No worries, if planes can't go in, planes can't go out." This makes sense right? We leave close to 5 and arrive in Atlanta at 5:35; our next flight is scheduled for departure at 5:30, again we don't have to worry because of thunderstorms, right? Wrong. We are running through the airport and as we arrive at our gate I watch as our plane pulls out and sets off for Las Vegas. "You mean you couldn't hold the plane for the passengers who were held up in Charlotte?" the NYFD guy asks. "Half of our flight was connecting here for Las Vegas, this is so f'ed up." Needless to say he was angry for all of us! Our next scheduled departure, 9:45pm. My thoughts, "Hey look on the bright side, we can walk 10 feet to the bar and enjoy ourselves for the next four hours, that should make for an interesting flight!" Plane leaves on time.

Monday Night - Flying into or out of Las Vegas at night is something everyone should witness, it is beautiful! We catch a cab and arrive at the Stratosphere around 11:30pm (which is 2:30am EST, and I know this because my husband reminds me of the EST whenever I ask for the current LV time). Needless to say, because it is so late EST he thinks it's bedtime and crawls onto the king sized mattress - "No no," I say, "you don't come to Vegas to sleep, you can do that at home. Get up, we are going to the casino." Five hours later we stumble back into our hotel room.

Tuesday - After four hours of sleep, we get up, get dressed, and head out onto the strip for lunch and sightseeing. We hit he obvious hotel/casino/resorts - Palazzo, Venetian, Bellagio, Caesar's Palace, and Casino Royale - this takes about 3 1/2 hours and we head back to Stratosphere to see the view from 1,100 feet up, hang out by the pool, and then get ready for dinner. Dinner is at Trevi at Caesar's Palace and I must say, I do not recommend it. The price is outrageous and the portions are tiny, in addition to the marinara sauce tasting like it came straight out of a Ragu bottle, yuk! We gamble a little in Caesar's and Bellagio but head back to Stratosphere where the minimums are much lower.

Wednesday - We head back to the strip, this time the southern part and walk to the famous "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign which was several miles further than we thought. "Should've gotten that water at McDonald's before we headed this way," but it was totally worth the heat exhaustion to get our picture with the sign. After we get back to the strip, we hit up Planet Hollywood - Barrett's idea - so we could search for Holly Madison in hopes of getting a photo-op with her (she's one of my favs!!!) No luck, oh well. We head up the strip a little further and stop in Bill's Gambling Hall and I win big at the Roulette table! Woohoo! We cash that and head back to the hotel to hang out by the pool for a little bit.

Wednesday Night - We go to the top of the Stratosphere again for some night views and pictures, before heading over to Freemont Street. Freemont Street is the second most famous street in Las Vegas, it is also known as the Freemont Experience, and the street itself is actually "Freemont Experience Street". This is what comes to mind when I think of Vegas-all the lights, the casinos, the live music, and the delicious food all in SHORT walking distance! Red Sushi is our restaurant choice and it is delicious with amazing service, I highly recommend going here! We experienced much of everything on Freemont and at the end of the night, Barrett gave his favorite belt to a Marine Veteran because his pants were falling down :)

Thursday - Recovery day from Freemont. We basically spend the day in the casino (hellooooo, air conditioning) and a little bit of time on the roof-top pool. Our day is cut a little short, because our show, KA by Cirque du Soleil, starts at 7. If ever in Vegas, one MUST see a Cirque du Soleil show; it was incredible! The colossal, 360-degree rotating stage just adds to the outstanding stunts put on by the acrobats. After the show, we head back to our hotel and change and pack so we can go to the casino one last time before leaving for NC.

Overall, it was a wonderful trip! I can honestly say we will be going back to see more of the strip, shows, restaurants, and casinos!

Next blog: What I learned in Vegas!