Day 16 - Full (and last) day in Las Vegas

Trip Start May 11, 2010
Trip End Jul 23, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Nevada
Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Day 16

Las Vegas

Yesterday was a bit hectic arriving in Vegas after a longish drive so we didn't get a chance to say much. It was also very later for us! In fact we were so late sorting the rubbish pictures from the not so bad pictures it was 8am in the UK so we skyped Meg as we’d missed her earlier.

So yesterday night we had a first taste of the Strip which is very glitzy. Yesterday I mentioned we stopped at Bellagios for the light show which was excellent and free but not sure if the amateur video clip was any good as I didn’t try to edit it. Actually the day before I videod Tina on the truck going to Antelope Canyon which turned out to be a bit like the usual home movie made worse by the bouncing about – and the fact I had the camera at 90 degrees so Tina appears to be horizontal as well as freezing. Duh.

After a decent sleep, another good hotel choice by Tina who spent months researching before we left and has definitely made good choices, we decided to catch up on chores. Even travelling we have to keep up with the credit cards and keep it all neat and tidy! Three lake bookings which was good so Tina did that admin as well, even though it makes her ratty… After that we faffed about a bit trying to decide what to do and eventually headed off to Stratosphere. We’d decided after looking round the MGM casino that the whole place feels a bit like an amusement arcade on a massive scale, although calling it a bit of a larger Margate might be stretching it. We’d looked up earlier where it all started and it seems some guy in the 30s pulled up in old Vegas after a long drive and thought what he’d give to have a pool right there and then. So it was born, at least that legend reckoned, that’s where the first theme resort was built. I also looked up where my uncle’s tattoo place was and that was right near Stratosphere so off we went on the monorail. The walk from Stratosphere took us out of the Strip and into downtown. Behind the glamour of the nigthtime Vegas it looked a bit tatty, clean but tatty. Had a chat to a US vet who had a mate in Liverpool, Tina walked on a bit as he was a bit ripe… We found the studio and I surprised uncle Dave, he recognised me after a few sentences, I suppose it has been 30 years. He got me (and my oldest friend from school David) our job in Saudi and his wife got us our first self employed jobs in a cleaning company in London. Ah, the joy of midnight Chinese restaurant cleans and pre Passover holiday cleaning, lovely.

We went up the Stratosphere tower while Dave was finishing off some guy. Great views. Was really surprised to see how sprawling the town is and how tiny the Strip is. The strip is like Dubai, except Dubai is much much bigger in terms of big buildings. There is an insane ride called, not surprisingly, Insanity which hangs over the 108 stories of Stratosphere. Mad. We didn’t go. But watched people that did… Dave met up with us in Starbucks and we chatted for a while and discovered new conspiracy theories we hadn’t thought of before – he’s a conspiracy theory buff it seems. He reminded me and Tina of Hild (my nan, his mum). Mum/Sue, we took a pic for you. I think the flame tat is off after all, the mid-life crisis will have to wait.

Vegas is definitely better at night, the dark and the lights hide a multitude of not so pleasant back streets behind the facades. Some of the themes were excellent. Paris was good, New York skyline excellent. We walked through Palazzo which puts MGM to shame and into the Venetian which is another new looking theme. All the Venice landmarks we saw last year recreated. In the picture we have of the gondola it’s all lit up as if daylight – very well done. The palazzo looked just like Dubai Mall (except smaller).

We had a great buffet in the Wynn and are still full 3 hours later after a 2 hour pedestrian dodging Strip walk. Also dodging the 'girl in your room in 20 mins’ hustlers, never seen so many. At least 100 in 4 blocks flicking cards at everyone they see. Mad. Got some nice pictures but sadly the camera is letting us down at night. To compensate we stopped off at a Peter Lit exhibition (Aussie photographer). Excellent photos and places we recognise. Tina reckons they are all helped along with photoshop!

That’s it for today. Tomorrow we head for Death Valley. We’ve dropped about 4,000 feet in the last few days and the next hotel is below sea level so no excuses about the altitude. Bit worried abiout Yosemite, the Tioga Pass (our road) is still closed - 6 feet of snow... Maybe a long drive round it.

Hello to Stephen, even though we haven’t seen each other since 6th Form in 1978, glad you like it! Also to Colly Oliver (have I got that right) in Alabama – never met but glad it helped. No plans to get to Alabama this trip though. And Barry, are you saying our daily spam, sorry blog, looks like a virus to AVG. Never. And Barb, she’s always smiling even when cold – just so you’re sure we made a special pic for you today.

Safe, sound, and amusement arcaded out

Mark & Tina

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mum b on

lovley picture tina much better. It was great you found your uncle mark after all this time bet he was shocked.

daveandsue on

So you found him! Thank you for the photo! Vegas is mad isn't it? Definitely better at night, must have been SO different after your travels up until now.
Looking forward to tomorrow, 'Carry on Enjoying' - (could that be a film???) x

mum b on

dont mention bag lady again after the lot youv got. are you sure that was a fish dish you had looked like frogs legs to me.

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