October 5, 2012
Best. Day. Ever.
What a day, what a wonderful day! We had a fairly leisurely morning, breakfast, Craig went for a swim and hot tub, and I wrestled with the Internet. Finally, finally, finally I was able to download my photos and publish a post. The boys waited, fairly patiently, for me to finish. I am not impressed with the Internet service at KOA’s. The previous KOA, and this one, have given me monumental frustration. They contract with Tengo, and my guess is that KOA is too cheap to provide both the boost needed for uniform reception throughout the campground and enough bandwidth to handle the traffic. With all my complaining, I am pretty sure my dear son will come to my rescue with a better solution for me.
I digress……again…..we left the Hag around 10:30 and “hit the Strip.” Las Vegas has great mass transit, or at least along the Strip. The “Deuce,” a fleet of double-decker buses, runs the length of the strip at 15-minute intervals, stopping at casinos along the way. A 24-hour pass costs $8.00 – a bargain, if you ask me and my tired feet! Our plan was to catch the Deuce at “Slots of Fun” at Circus Circus. The bus was full, and it wasn’t terribly hot, so we started to walk, ending up at the “Encore” and eventually the “Wynn.” The mosaic tile work at both of these hotels is just incredible. So brightly colored and perfectly executed, I just can’t get enough of it. So, while the boys played the slot machines, I strolled around and took a LOT of pictures of the floor. Other folks were doing the same, so I didn’t look quite as strange as you would think.
It is safe to say, that we each enjoyed something completely different about this city and what it has to offer. Dad was happy to casino hop, playing the slots at each place; I enjoyed looking – at the shops, the architecture, and the people.
Craig was fairly content to do whatever. He gambled a little and looked a little.
We eventually caught the Deuce and rode to “Mandalay Bay,” at the south end of the Strip, gambled a bit, caught the tram to the “Excalibur,” and eventually got back on the Deuce getting off at the “Bellagio.”
I told the boys that there were two things I really wanted to show them: the tile work at the Wynn (they were pretty ho-hum about that) and the fountains outside the Bellagio. While we were on the bus, I mentioned to Dad that we were going to stop and see a water show. Dad gave me a funny look and said, with a laugh, “You mean, like that place south of Salem?” The words left me before I could even temper my tone. I said, “NO, DAD, this has NOTHING to do with “Enchanted Forest!” And, of course, it doesn’t; it is in a league unto it’s own. We watched with awe at the beautiful ballet of water. Maybe I am easy to entertain, but I could, (and have, on a previous trip) watched for hours. Ah……bliss……
I am of the mind that there are, at least, four very different “cultures,” or moods or whatever you want to call it on the Las Vegas Strip. There are the folks that are out and about from dawn until about 2:30pm, who are a subdued (sober) group, and the true Las Vegas crowd who come to life mid-afternoon and party through the night. Overlaying these two groups is the west side of the street, which seems to have a more affluent crowd, and the east side that tends to not hide raucous energy. (or inebriation) We were out the door with the early group on the west side, and stepped off the bus onto the east side of the Strip at 3:00 in the afternoon. We all noticed that the town had come alive. Additionally, it was Friday. We saw an ambulance call and subsequent pick-up, street hawkers, and many who were on their way to having the night of their life. By 6:30, Craig was ready to get back to the Hag, take care of the dog, and get off his feet. We had a delicious dinner of “Nathan’s Hot Dogs” at “Slots of Fun,” and I am serious about this. With the heat, and the walking, the hot dogs were a great end to the day.
Craig left Dad and I to our own devices and went back to the campground. We stayed on for about another hour, Dad playing the slots at Circus Circus and me watching the trapeze act being performed above us.
It was a great day – lots of walking, beautiful weather, and something to entertain each of us. And yes, I want to come back – soon.
Today’s gas: $0 – She cut us a break
Today’s mileage: hahahaha……the Hag stayed put!