Back in Las Vegas

Trip Start Aug 26, 1994
Trip End Sep 18, 1994

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Flag of United States  , Nevada
Saturday, March 8, 2003

DAY 21 THU I awoke early this morning and set off to see the sights of Las Vegas. All in all I walked from the hostel to Caesar's Palace and back again. As the hostel was closer to the old downtown area of Las Vegas, this was a hike of several miles. Along the way I visited the Mirage (home of Siegfried and Roy, the pompadoured pair from Paris), the Sahara, Treasure Island, Circus Circus and the "Wayne is Home" Sands. I didn't make it to Luxor or MGM because I was worn out from the previous few days and, once I was inside amongst the poker machines, all casinos seemed the same.

The temperature was in the nineties and the sun drew the melanin to the surface of my already suntanned skin, leaving me even more the sun bronzed Ossie. With decreasing enthusiasm I entered each casino, my goal being to souvenir a change cup from each establishment. I lost interest after a while and dumped the few I had collected. The most impressive of the casinos I visited was Caesar's Palace, a rather glitzy reconstruction of an ancient Roman casino with a disconcertingly realistic forum; fake sky and all. Even Siegfried and Roy's white tigers at the Mirage could not compete for atmosphere with the innards of the Palace. Treasure Island boasted a pair of eighteenth century ships which did battle every so often, though not while I was there.

It was at one of these glorified RSL's that I accidentally gambled, briefly winning seventy cents on a machine which took quarters before blowing the lot on a dime machine. I hadn't meant to gamble, only to change a five dollar note into quarters. Unfortunately I failed to realise that the change machine fed the coins into a slot machine rather than directly to me.

After my big loss I decided to return to the hostel. I lunched on a huge chef's salad at Casino Royale Denny's then hit the street once again. Within minutes I suffered a re-occurrence of Melbourne Belly and was forced to hastily enter the next casino and make use of its bathroom. My illness left as rapidly as it had arrived and I was able to continue my walk without constricting my bowels. I was quite anxious to procure a few of the ubiquitous booklets advertising massage parlours and bordellos, however I was too embarrassed to take any from the dispensing containers which stood in clusters along the sidewalk. Eventually I found a pile stacked in a spot concealed from public view and hastily snatched a couple. Much to my later regret, I dumped them in a trash bin when I found that the more interesting bodily attractions of the comely lasses advertising their services had been concealed with large stars and exclamation marks.

After all my walking and hiking I had developed painful blisters on my feet. A visit to Myer Mini-Mart presented me with a wide choice of band aids and drugs, many not available without a prescription back home. I agonised over the many different labels, finally settling on a generic brand band aid and a bottle of generic sleeping tablets.

While sitting on the bench on the verandah outside my room I developed an irresistible urge to ring Margaret. There was a phone card machine in the hostel lunch room, however I didn't have a ten dollar note. Once again I made the half mile trip to the Myer Mini-Mart, changed a twenty dollar note and returned to the hostel where I bought a phone card. Card in hand, I strolled down the strip for about a mile until I found a casino. With great eagerness I rang Margaret's office, only to be greeted by an answering machine. Margaret was at lunch. A quick visit to the closest water closet served to fill in time and my next call was answered in the sweet tones of my beloved. My joie de vie rejuvenated, I fairly danced back to the barracks.
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