Las Vegas, here we come!

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We left our very dusty wild campsite in the desert of Logandale, NV, and headed to Lake Meade and the Hoover Dam. Such a different landscape through this area, very desolate. Lake Meade was very low and pipes were laid from the low shoreline up the beach to the buildings to bring water up there. The entire area didn’t seem very inviting although there was a marina.

We drove to the Hoover Dam area but there was a long line to get through security so we opted out and headed for Las Vegas!

On the way I looked at Priceline for hotels and got a great price on a room at Ceasars Palace, $58 and we would pay the city tax once we arrived.

Stew remembered much about Vegas from the 90’s when he lived in San Diego. He and his friends would come to Vegas every so often – but so much was different now. Very commercial. Many of the places he remembered had been torn down or remodeled. About 1:00 we headed to Ceasar’s Palace, it cost an extra $30 to check-in early, this also got us a room upgrade!

The baggage people at the entrance were very helpful and patient with us. We had no suitcases just lots of little bags etc. They got us a basket to put everything in which made things easier. It took us about 20 minutes to get all our stuff organized and out of the car. I’m sure we looked like vagabonds!! I wandered around inside while Stew got the car parked, then we headed to our room. It was awesome! Nice big kingsize bed, jacuzzi tub, large shower room! We were in heaven.

The first thing we did was shower as we we hadn’t showered in several days! That felt so great! They had lots of “mini bar” items on top of the dresser surfaces so Stew cleared them off to make room for our stuff (this would get us into lots of trouble as it turns out… an extra $400 charge for moving this stuff into a drawer. We even moved it back again, but the sensors already detected we moved the items so we were charged for it all!!! Thankfully we did get that charge credited. So if you are ever in a hotel where they have any mini-bar items, don’t even pick them up to check ingredients!!!!).

We decided our next stop would be the pool. Wandering down to the pool around 4:15, there were only 3 of the 5 pools open (oh well)… we didn’t know we needed id to do just about anything at the pool, and it was closing at 5:00 (something we only discovered when Stew went to get us two drinks).

After we found some chaises in the shade (it was very hot, about 90 and really sunny), Stew headed to the bar, finding out they would not serve him because they were closing. The guy buying some drinks said to the bartender “he’s with me”, indicating Stew… so, Stew ordered a white Claw and Heinekin Zero. The cost was $37.65. Stew only had $37.00 so the bartender took both the drinks, making a big production of pouring them down the drain in front of Stew. Stew made it back to the chaise just in time for them to kick us out! So far the pool was a complete BUST!

So, we decided to get ourselves dressed and hit the street looking for a cold drink. It turns out that at Ceasars Palace you can only get the Heineken Zero at the pool! UGH! Luckily we found a spot across the street that had both our drinks and for about $10 we scored both. We did some sightseeing, heading to the Flamingo and eventually to the Linq Promenade. This area was pretty cool and we found a great Mexican Restaurant!

At the restaurant, we chose to sit outside, just off the Promenade so we could people-watch. We noticed guests were coming into the outside seating area sitting down and then rapidly getting up and leaving. We could not figure out what was going on. Even the table next to us was wondering as well. Finally, the server told us there was a rat just outside the restaurant (actually just over the railing where we were sitting). The rat was literally just sitting out in the open munching on something. By this point, people on the Promenade were gawking and taking pictures of the rat. After much discussion the serving crew and a few of the guests tried to catch the rat in the broom dishpan – it was a sight to see. They were unsuccessful and managed to chase the rat closer to the restaurant. Finally, it disappeared – this did not make the dinners feel very relieved! The server asked if we wanted to leave, but our order was in and we were pretty hungry. Stew was a little more wigged out than I was, but we stayed and really enjoyed the rest of the dinner. The food was really good. I thought we should get a “rat discount” but they did not offer one!

We decided to head to the erupting Volcano and the Pirate’s ship. Two exhibits down the street that Stew had talked up all afternoon. We found out that the Pirate’s ship was long gone and the Volvano shut down a week or so earlier. So we headed inside to the Forum Shops at Ceasars. This was a cool inside mall where the ceiling looked like the sky. It reminded me of the underground mall in Toronto. The biggest issue was finding an exit to get out of the Forum of Shops!! Next stop was the Bellagio for the fountain presentation.

The fountain was about 75% operational but due to scaffolding, you couldn’t view it easily. We had to stand off to the side on the entrance steps. We did find out what the deal was with all the scaffolding… In November NASCAR was coming and they had to dig up the road and lay down new road for the cars. They also had to build stands and railings to protect the pedestrians. It made the whole area difficult to navigate. It was still very hot so heading inside sounded good to us anyway.

We got back to the hotel room around 11:00 and we were bushed. Had an awesome night’s sleep! Next morning we got around and started taking all our stuff to the car in the “self-park lot”. A funny thing happened on the way… A man approached Stew in the elevator and wanted to know about our experience in Ceasar’s Palace. He asked Stew if he could talk for a few minutes. Stew obliged and told him all what had gone on, with the pool, the drinks, etc. As it turns out it was James Healy, the new Director of Operations of Ceasar’s Palace! He said if we chose to come back he would comp us a room or something!

It was quite a trip to Vegas, but I was ready to head to San Diego to see Kim!!

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