Monday, June 23, 2008

23 June Las Vegas

Greg's comments: Before Bob rambles on about our trip, I thought I'd share our visit from a "ghost of vacations past" we encountered at the end of our trip. Our last night in Vegas was pretty mild, we ate dinner at one of the Italian joints over in New York, New York. We sat at our table and people watched, then got back to our room around ten to get a good night's sleep. We got to the airport by five for our seven a.m. flight. We were in the same row, Bob on the window and me on the isle, when right before take off a young kid in his early twenties plops down between us and says, "I'm never drinking again." He goes on to tell us he hasn't been to bed in two days, he lost a ton of money gambling, and he and his buddies had way too good of a time. Before he fell asleep he deleted all the phone numbers on his cell he accumulated before his girlfriend back home saw them. He put a black mask over his eyes and he had a very rough flight back home.
Bob and I just sat there and took him in, remembering what it was to be young and irresponsible and on vacation.
Bob's comments on Day 9: Greg and I rolled out of Motel 6 dignity and into Hooter's Casino by 10:00 am an even got into a room so we were able to unload our bags. We wandered over to MGM where we purchased a monorail pass. We wanted to be able to cruise effortlessly between the casinos and avoid the 106 degrees wherever possible. On the fly I can say the Flamingo looks to be a good Vegas destination. The Venetian an entertaining appeal and in this beautiful Italian monument we managed to find a Panda Express for lunch. After some very bad navigation and a poorly engineered map we must have walked 2 miles in search of the monorail station. Along the way we passed through a Catholic Church parking lot when a taxi pulled up to drop off parishioners. On the trunk of the cab was a 4x2 sign displaying the "thongly" clad hind ends of 6 Vegas dancers. Greg wondered allowed that he was a Catholic and if they were performing at the church we might get in free. We crawled to the monorail station and traveled to Harrah's and walked the overpass into Caesar's Palace where there was a movie shoot taking place. They were filming 10 of the Roman Legions finest. Their arms were as big around as Daniel Bradshaw's head. Next on the tour was the Belagio where the fountains were not entertaining anyone at the time. Back at Hooters we charged our batteries for a wild night out at New York New York, Aladdin and finally the Luxor. You can only imagine the fun we had Jason…..wink, wink. At this moment it is Monday morning 5:30 am and Greg and I are waiting for our flight to Cleveland. We are hopping to take a bump if the offer is right. Here is what we have done on this adventure: Tom, Bob and Greg arrived in Vegas on Friday June 13. We rented a red Chevy Impala that got decent mileage but had a horrible turning radius. We visited 6 outstanding National Parks mostly in Utah, Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, Arches, Canyonlands and the Grand Canyon (N. Rim). We visited 5 National Monuments (no different from NP), the Grand Staircase-Escalante, Bridges, Monument Valley, Lake Powell Recreation at Glen Canyon Dam, and Hoover Dam. We survived the dangers of unsurpassed beauty from cliffs, crags, grottos canyons, buttes and mesas. Thanks to the US government for allowing us to take these risks because it really adds to the experience. We saw the best that nature can produce and here in Vegas, what man can achieve. We drove 1358 miles in ten days and ten nights. We heard at least 10 different languages, met people from Chagrin Falls, students from John Carroll, Chardon, a friend from Bradenton and strangely no one from St. Louis but it was in the news everyday. We watched NBA finals, European Cup Soccer and we watched the Tribe never win a game. We unwittingly consumed 3.2 beer and behaved like it was the real deal. We survived the archaic blue laws of Utah but it meant that we became members of 3 different establishments in Moab, Utah. We got to know the little towns of Hatch, Tropic, Torrey, Moab, Page, Bitter Springs, Jacobs Lake, Hurricane and a little known place called Las Vegas. Greg and I are taking money home from the roulette table at O'Sheas and between the three of us spent $625 per person on room, gas and some meals. You can't beat it. Thanks for listening and by the way Helen Thomas gets credit for our much used phrase ("found dignity") Out RTT

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