Lost Wages!

Trip Start Aug 15, 2005
1
8
31
Trip End Dec 21, 2005


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Flag of United States  , Nevada
Friday, September 9, 2005

Monday 5th September 2005

Today has been great even though the majority of it was spent travelling from San Francisco to Las Vegas. We woke at 6 am as we had a taxi waiting to take us to the Ferry Terminal. From here we took the 20 minute bus ride to Emeryville, then caught the train (6 hours) to Bakersfield. The train journey went quite quick too. It's the holidays over here so every seat on the train was taken. We sat opposite a lady from the Orange County who sat chatting to us for a while. When we got to Bakersfield, we had another 5 1/2 hour journey to Las Vegas. It had already warmed up outside. The bus driver stopped a few times on the way to Vegas allowing some of the passengers to have a cigarette break. One food stop was McDonalds which we HAD to have as we were starving! The heat when we got of the bus was intense! It was like a hot hair dryer blowing on our faces.
We were driving along in the middle of nowhere or what it seemed. The train journey was just as strange, you would just pass the odd house now and again and every so often you would see the odd truck waiting at the crossings and all I kept thinking was where have these people come from!
On the bus we were playing eye spy except we only had 2 goes each! All we could see was sky, mountains, telegraph poles and bushes! I was singing 'we're on the road to nowhere'!
Around 7.15 pm we could start and see the lights. We drove past a couple of large hotels with roller coasters running around the outside...we continued for another 20 minutes and then we hit Vegas. We drove past our hotel, the Excalibur which was this huge castle! It was all lit up and looked fab. It was like Disneyland! We got off the bus downtown around 8.00 pm and it was 92 degrees! We were roasting! Our taxi took us to our hotel. It was opposite the MGM Grand, New York, New York and a walk from the Bellagio, we couldn't of got a better hotel! When we walked into the entrance, we were straight into the Casino itself and we had to walk through the Casino with our backpacks on to check in! We were in room 19267! tower 2! overlooking the 2 huge pools.
This hotel alone had the casino, hair salon, shops, and fast food, it was just so big and a bit strange! Our hotel room is all medieval too, with low lighting, castle lights and stuff. We dropped our bags in the room and had a look around and get a bite to eat. We had nachos and iced tea (we are getting used to this iced tea now!). We then grabbed a Corona from the bar and sat watching the live band which consisted of Jon Bon Jovi, lead singer from the Darkness, Elton John and the women from Black Eyed Peas look alikes! It was so funny! One thing I need to mention was that we came across this diner on the way here today called Popeye's Chicken and Biscuits???

Tuesday 6th September 2005

Well we've had another bizarre day today. We are loving Las Vegas and its....well different!
We had a lie in this morning and got up for iced tea and a cinnamon roll (which we seem to be eating a lot of!) We decided to take a walk down the strip today. It's so hot, 100 degrees and the heat is intense. It's so great here, all the hotels are interlinked and you can walk from one to the other through walkways. It's so hot outside like we are sweating, then we go inside and the air conditioning is so high it's freezing! Some of the casinos/hotels we checked out today included the MGM Grand (where they do boxing), Tropicana, New York New York, Bellagio, Mirage and Treasure Island they are just so huge! We saw the White Tiger int he mirage but it was asleep so we will come back for photos. We treated ourselves to a huge waffle cone with ben and jerry's ice cream and walked to the Bellagio to catch the 3 pm fountain show. It was the same song from the end of Ocean's Eleven and I had prickles on the back of my neck and for a moment had this overwhelming sense of emotion come over me. I just can't believe how lucky we are seeing all these amazing things. Last week we were looking out over the Golden Gate Bridge and now we are standing outside watching the fountains of the Bellagio!
The roller coaster was running that goes through New York New York which is just mental!
After walking all day we went to the hotel, sorted out our bus reservations for the Grand Canyon this weekend and went for a swim in one of the huge pools which was just what we needed. We showered and went and had some tea, taking a quick walk back to the Bellagio to see the amazing fountains by night. I made Dan stay for 3 shows which are every 15 minutes. Whilst walking down the strip there are people just flicking these cards at you offering you 'someone' for the night if you know what I mean! They are very annoying. We sat and had watched the band and some very entertaining girls (drunk girls!) from Seattle before going to bed.

Wednesday 7th September 2005

Another mad day! For some reason the alarm clock was going off at 6 am and we couldn't turn it off! We went downstairs for breakfast (crossiants) which was nice. Liz called this morning to say hello (it's always nice to hear from her), she gave us a few more tips on what to see in Vegas. We started off by getting the tram to Mandalay Bay hotel, this was huge and had it's own Shark Reef. It's cheaper between 5 and 10 pm so we decided to go back later on. The heat is unbearable again today. It's 102 degrees so we are trying to stay inside!
We got to see the White Tiger at the Mirage today so took some pictures. We also went to the Venetian, they have like a canal running through it with Gondola's taking people through the shopping centre! Very mad!
We went to the entrance of Madam Tussauds and had a photo with Michael Jordan. We walked back up the strip and nipped into Denny's for tea as it was roasting hot..here we got free refills so refueled on liquids!
We headed back to the Shark Reef which was just great. We had these little audio machines which gave us all the information we needed. We have never been so close to sharks and I hope never that close again! The teeth on those things are just huge!
It was a bit hard to believe that this huge aquarium with a shipwreck was in a hotel!
After a quick freshen up, we went to the Bellagio again (I have to make sure we see them every day!!!) We caught Viva Las Vegas by Elvis which was fab! We stayed for another 3 shows (thanks to me!) then walked back to Excalibur calling at the shop to stock up on shower gel and a larged iced tea to top up as we are de-hydrating here! We decided to chill out tomorrow as it's just too hot to walk around.

Thursday 8th September 2005

It's been another scorcher today 102 degrees again. We did so much walking yesterday we decided to spend some time relaxing by the pool so after breakfast we went downstairs to catch some rays and gosh it was hot! After a couple of hours we had to go inside to cool off! Our room has good air conditioning so it was nice to relax in the cool air. We sat watching Laguna Beach (which I'm really getting into!). We decided to take a walk and get some beers in as it's our last night here. We made it to the fountains again...honestly we could stand and watch them for hours! It's only a 10 minute or so walk so I've insisted we watch them every night so should catch them tomorrow before we leave Vegas. (Copey, I picked up some of those cards with nude women on for you!....a bit of a souvenier!). We have some brilliant video's of the Bellagio fountains so I will try and post them onto the travel pod. We took a nice stroll back to the hotel and it was only 10.30 am and I went to bed out like a light leaving Dan to watch some American TV.

Friday 10th September 2005

Woke this morning and felt great! We had a bit of a lie in today, our check out time for the hotel was 11 am. We packed our stuff, wandered down to check out our bags and went for some breakfast. We weren't leaving until 9 pm tonight so needed to leave our bags at the luggage place. We decided to go and look round some more shops, keeping indoors as much as possible because of the heat. Then we came across this cool shop and I picked up a smart pair of Oakley's at a bargain price! They were great as the sun was just so strong. We stopped off at Ceasars Palace and watched the show every 1/2 hour then went into Denny's again for turkey club sandwiches which were just scrummy! We had lemonade and they just keep filling up your glass! We got our postcards and our souvenier Vegas chips to take home and walked back towards our hotel. We decided to go into the MGM Grand to see if the Lions were there and suprisingly they were, we got there just in time when they were letting them into the enclosure. Apparantley, they bring different lions to the enclosure but only for 6 hours at a time which was why we didn't see them the first time round. We got a cool spot in the gift shop away from the crowds and sat and watched them. They were saying there that the enclosure alone costed 9 million dollars to construct! There were 2 guys in the lions enclosure with them, one of which looked like the boss out of the office, he thought he was cool sitting between two rocks with his head in his hands when the lion just went to jump on him! He just pushed it's nose with his hand and started tapping it, he went really red as he was so embarrassed! Apparantley, they use hand signals and the lions recognise the tones of their voices as communication.
We went off to catch the last showing of the Bellagio fountains (I know this is mentioned every day but it is just so cool!) and then left at 9 pm in a taxi heading for Las Vegas airport.
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