May 21, 2008

Alas! Vegas!

I pulled into Vegas around six o’clock in the evening. My hotel had been on the cheap side and was on the old strip (which Adrienne had described to me as “ghetto”), so I was pleasantly surprised by how nice my room was. Oh, sure, there were miserable alcoholics smoking and pissing away their money just a hundred feet or so below me — but I had a page right out of an Ikea catalogue.

After showering the desert off and having a quick dinner, I headed down to the new strip. My hotel had claimed to have a shuttle bus, but in fact this was a lie; the concierge looked positively terrified when I asked about it. And because Mallory (or “her mom”, to whom all of her fussing is ultimately attributed) had spent weeks telling me scare stories about the dangers of walking about Vegas on one’s own, I shelled out for a cab.

I will say this about Vegas cab drivers: they are a chatty bunch. At least my guy on the way to the strip talked to me; my guy on the way back to the hotel talked mainly to himself (I think one comment — “I’ll tell you, if there’s one goddamn thing these people can do, it’s fuck up a road” — was directed at me, but as a conversation starter I wasn’t quite sure where to go with it).

On the strip I strolled around a couple of the big casinos — the Bellagio, Caesar’s, Planet Hollywood, Paris — casually depositing my money in strategic slot machines, and eventually ending up at a blackjack table at the Flamingo, where I chatted with my Ethiopian dealer and walked away with $35. It didn’t quite cover the cab rides.

The strip is a pretty surreal place. I guess you don’t need me to tell you this. I think my favourite part was Frank Sinatra’s voice echoing down the street — it was coming from the fountain show at the Bellagio, though I prefer to imagine Ol’ Blue Eyes’s ghost hovering above the strip, getting tanked on martinis and trying to stare down women’s shirts. Though I guess if you want to see boobs in Vegas there are easier ways to go about it — I was offered escorts by approximately eighty-seven thousand people.

After a day of driving, I was tired and stiff, but I still capped off my night in the most Vegaseque way possible: I went back to my hotel room and fell asleep in front of the Weather Channel. Just like in that movie.

(A few more pictures added to the Facebook album.)

Next: Just Deserts!

1 comment:

Mal said...

I resent the word "fussing." Jerk.

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