24/7 Las Vegas

Trip Start Apr 02, 2009
1
7
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Trip End Sep 09, 2010


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Where I stayed

Flag of United States  , Nevada
Friday, August 21, 2009

The morning drive into Las Vegas was predictable, running 160 miles across desert plains, on long straight roads and in searing heat. As we rolled into Vegas the temperature hit 112f (45c in real money) and grand buildings rose out of the desert like an oasis. We had no idea which road we were to take to get to our hotel – the famous Bellagio – but as it turned out all roads go to the 4.5 milestrip! The Bellagio was awesome – huge, busy – the reception was made up of around 20 check-in desks, all busy. 'Do I have to go into that scrum?', I asked the parking fellow.

‘what’s a scrum?’ he replied.

‘It’s a term from the game of rugby’, I told him.

‘Don’t know rugby.’

‘Imagine American Football only 10 times better’ I explained. From the look of pain on his face, clearly hr couldn’t, so he went off to find someone else to assist.

The Bellagio, we discovered is like all the other hotels in Vegas in that, in order to get to your room, you have to find your way through the casino. The lighting is permanently evening, there are no windows and there are always people gambling no matter what time of day it might be. We decided that we should enjoy LV for what it offers so we went to a couple of shows, walked the strip watched the fabulous Bellagio fountain show – by day and by night and played some of the tables.

Our efforts at gambling did not get off to the dream start that we hoped. Having set ourselves a budget of $500 we tried roulette first (being the only game we could understand). The first $100 disappeared disappointing quickly so we retreated to the bar to plan how we could avoid losing everything in the first hour. I decided that 21/ vinght et un (or whatever it is called) should be our next effort as I vaguely remember playing it as a schoolboy. Finding a table with only a $5 minimum bet, I sat down. About 3 hands later, having no idea what was going on, I discovered that I was playing a form of 21 called poker. Not only that it was variation of poker, but also that it had a name we cannot recall. Surprisingly, even with both of us playing, by the time we retired to bed 3 hours later, we had only managed to lose another $75. Clearly, whatever it was we were playing had given us lots more bang for our bucks. You will not be surprised to hear that when we tried again the next night, the remainder of our $500 budget was removed from us in no time at all.

Debbie had planned our second day in town with military precision. After breakfast, we would lounge around the pool, soaking up the sunshine until lunch. Then we would explore The Strip, have dinner, watch a show and lose the remainder of our money in the casino. All great plans have to be flexible and this one was tested to the limit when it rained all day!

We went to the Cirque du Soleil in the evening, an experience Debbie enjoyed. It consisted of a lot of almost naked men with rippling muscles showing off. With Debbie’s eyes glued to the opera glasses, I felt a tad inadequate but consoled myself with the knowledge that Jonny Foreigner could never match the qualities of proper Englishman like myself.
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