Tuesday, April 15, 2003

All right, here is the long awaited post about Vegas. I'm well enough rested to sit in front of the computer, after catching up with all the things that were ignored for the past week. Unfortunately, I do have to work at eight in the morning tomorrow, so this post might not be the definitive true story behind our honeymoon in Vegas.

We left relatively early last Monday, like 4 in the morning to drive down to Everett for some other business, and I was still a bit under the weather so my sinuses actually affected my inner ear, which in turn gave me motion sickness. Anyone who gets motion sickness knows that that doesn't usually happen when one drives, but it did happen to me. But we were running a bit late but boarded on the plane just fine. There was an opportunity to get bumped to the next flight for free tickets, but since the flight wouldn't have been till 2 in the afternoon, we skipped on it. Fell asleep on the flight, wife decided to take the liberty of eating my candy bar.

My first impression of Vegas? They're out to get me. There were slot machines at the airport, the moment you stepped off the plane. When we got to the hotel, we got charged an energy fee, which was 3 bucks a day. Then the car rental guy, who seemed to just have a thing for me, because he certainly was cordial to the two groups of customers before me, decided that I was going to be his sucker for the him. He patronized me to no avail, but certainly did raise my guard up. Left me kinda mad the whole day after that. Wife and I walked rather aimlessly around all the hotels the first day, we were actually quite worn out from waking up early and walking around so much. But we were quite taken by the scenery, and the busy streets. Drove a Maroon Nissan Sentra around the Strip, which proved to be a worthy expenditure because the Stratosphere was actually quite far from the rest of the action.

We spent the other two days slightly more organized, because we brought our maps and had a list of things to do around Vegas and it's casinos, and we didn't actually start gambling until the second day (which we did all right on the slots, but I kept losing money rather unintentionally.) Caught a few free shows, and got to see the fountains at the Bellagio. Thought about Ocean's Eleven. We also caught a free show at the Tropicana, where we sat by the slows beneath the stage and I took quite a few photos of the dancers onstage. Due to my position, they did happen to be upskirt shots, but I don't suppose that they minded much, because they were wearing thongs onstage. Luckily, a lot of the casinos did have good ventilation, so the excessive smoking around the floor didn't really bother my wife or myself, and I am actually quite sensitive to that stuff. It's odd though, to see people walking around with lit ciggies and carrying around beer. It's like they lost their civility to the city.

We tried to stay on a rather normal diet for the baby, but since there was so much to do, and the variety of foods were so limited (if you liked hot dogs and beer, you were good to go. Otherwise, it's American type meals all the way.) that we almost avoided eating altogether. And when we did dine, it was not cheap, nor good, nor healthy. It was dining purgatory, in some manner. Of course, if you had a little more flexibility in your budget, you could go for the variety, for 20-30 bucks for an entree. Or perhaps we just weren't lucky in seeking out the cheap good food.

One of the many things that we did talk about was when we could return to Vegas, and the next time putting aside time to see the Grand Canyon. We put that off because of the combined 12 hour drive, and the fact that there was still so much to experience in Vegas to just put in 12 hours of driving to see a hole in the ground. We talked about when our baby was three, and JL was 17, which was a bit weird because from looking at all the decor at the hotels, which ranged from nude sculptures and paintings to guys wearing "nude strippers" tee shirts, handing out barely dressed calling cards for clubs, we wondered if Vegas was really as kid-friendly as the Travel Channel has been making it out to be. All and all, I would say that it was still living it up as Sin City.

But that trip was fun, sorry to summarize but in keeping with the theme of the blog, I'd rather not go too much into detail about the honeymoon.

So we came back from Vegas, but not before losing 10 bucks at the airport - My wife has become a bit of a slot junkie. And we drove back to Bellingham, picked up JL from her sisters, drove home, slept for about 7 hours, and drove to Oregon the next morning. It was about a six hour drive, from one end of Washington to the other, and let me say that Washington is very green, and there's not much else. At least not much as I-5 had to offer. We drove to see my wife's ex mother in law, which is rather strange because I'm essentially seeing my predecessor's creator. They're estranged. Basically a son who doesn't call his mom. Anyway, the visit there was the complete mirror of Vegas, very low key, very sedated. There was actually more smoke damage to us than in Vegas, though. Bev did smoke a bit around us, though she tried to keep it away from us.

So we're glad to finally get back into routine, as routine as starting a new job and getting ready for a baby gets, I suppose. I'll put up some photos later.

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