Viva, Viva Las Vegas!
Las Vegas 2019
Oh boy, this Vegas trip is something special for many reasons.
1. We suckered Elizabeth sister and Fiancee into joining the usual rat pack that is Me Elizabeth, Miguel, and Robin.
2. This trip is our 10 year anniversary visit. Now we have been 13-14 times but this is our annual March Madness trip and one we believe is our 10th time coming for the madness.
3. Robin and Miguel. Enough said.
This trip started fantastic as our new house is a 10 minute Uber ride to Reagan(DCA). The flights Elizabeth warned prior to departure, that this particular booking was not going to be great. We booked last minute because of the move to Virginia, and I did not have a job at the time of booking so we used points to get the flights free. With that we had some turbulence along the way. We booked 1 stop flights (DCA-BOS-LAS) and we made it to Boston rather quickly but our 50 minute layover became a two hour delay. The plane we were supposed to fly on "developed a mechanical problem" which I believe is industry verbiage for the plane you were supposed to be on is a Boeing 737-Max8 and has been grounded. Alas they got us a plane and off we went. Usually when flying west, airlines tend to fly around the jet stream which blows across the middle of the country west to east. This adds miles and time but is usually a lot smoother ride. Airlines will use the jet-stream when flying west to east as it pushes the aircraft along. We had plans to meet everyone at Gordon Ramsay Burgr when we got into town, but the delay plus extra flying time killed those plans. Nothing like going around your ass to get to your elbow. We arrived safely and all baggage accounted for so we are winning already.
In Vegas we probably gamble, always eat well, certainly drink, but DEFINITELY walk. We have been fortunate to travel a bit, and without a doubt Quebec/Montreal is the high bar for walking at 55 miles (Yes Walked), but our Vegas trips are always a high step count/distance trip. We usually start the day off walking before breakfast. Over the last 10 years Miguel has a fine set of lab rats he has been grooming, and we are just used to the routine now. This week might be one of our lower weeks coming in at a lowly 35 miles walked in six days. But you DEFINITELY need the steps to make up for the amazing food available 24/7.
The advantage of Vegas being our home away from home is that we have figured out what works and what does not. Like the pizza from the little stand inside The Flamingo is better at midnight than 7pm. We have a few go-to place we do not skip. One of my favorite places is Hash House A Go Go. HHAGG has earned the right to have the two hour wait you can expect on a busy St. Patty's Day Weekend. While I love it, nothing is worth two hour wait to eat and poop later; NO I take that back maybe HHAGG. Luckily Miguel has a few tricks up his sleeve and we get in quick. I cannot recommend enough, the brown sugar banana pancakes. Elizabeth would argue the blueberry is just as good but there is just no chance. Kathleen ordered the "rookie" plain buttermilk and while I'm sure it was fine (aka boring) the brown sugar banana is amazing. If you cannot tell by the photo, use the eggs as reference, these puppies are a solid 14" circumference and it is my goal to finish it. I've been successful in my endeavor every year except the first.
Another place we love is Holstein and Shakes, located in The Cosmopolitan Hotel. They make a perfectly executed milkshake every time. Their black and white is just perfection. The vanilla is the leader in this two step, they use just the right amount of chocolate to give your mouth a taste of something without over powering the vanilla. The Malt they use is just enough where you realize it is there but again it is balanced with the other two elements. This year though while searching Elizabeth found a new novelty milkshake place. Black Tap located in The Venician Hotel.
They specialize in the berserk, we ordered "The Cake Shake" it's a full size cake batter flavored milkshake fully decked out with icing, sprinkles, whipped cream, and topped off with a full slice of confetti cake. The folks sitting next to us ordered the Oreo version, while I wanted to go this route we went with Cake. Oh well next year. If you are wondering what about buffets? Well we got ya covered. We have tried a lot of the buffets and we have one we really like in The Aria. Stay away from the Flamingo buffet. Paris has a decent one, and I am told the dinner buffet at Bellagio is fantastic. But it is another high calorie intake day so be prepared for that. Now you see why we need to walk so much.
March 31st 2014 "The High roller" went online and was something like $60 a person if memory serves correctly. Now 5 years in we finally bit the bullet and went on the wheel. The High Roller is the world's largest Ferris wheel, at its peak it is 550 ft tall. It has 32 Cabins that hold 40 people each. The whole revolution takes 30 minutes from start to finish. We finally got tickets at a reasonable price and went along for a ride. I would say if you can get the price down to about $20 a person and you can get right on, not waiting more than 1-3 minutes, it is a solid 6/10. They do have a roller ball that has a bar in it and you can order drinks. But unless you are a real de-gen you might make it to 2 drinks. The sights are neat you can see all around the strip and surrounding residential areas. They also fill the ball with your party and others depending on how many people are in your party. So if you were to spend $60, wait one hour, and get stuffed with four other parties It would be disappointing. Trust me.
I am always looking for people to share the Vegas experience, we always have a great time and would love for others to enjoy it just the same. This year as I mentioned we bamboozled Kathleen and Chris into coming along for the ride. They took full advantage of all the sights and experiences available to them in a short five day window. We hung out in the Sports book and watched the caps kick the dog poo out of the flyers. Chris and I also rode the roller coaster inside New York New York. This is the second and last time I have ridden this poorly constructed nonsense, believe it or not it is missing a piece of track, well it feels that way.
Time will tell if we like Dr. Frankenstein created a monster. Chris to this point in his life had not gambled, so after a quick few pointers he was all-in on black Jack. To his credit he did well, left Vegas up. While we are giving pointers to beginners, let us discuss the absolute disgusting condition of all chips and cards at a casino. Ladies and gentlemen, when you use the bathroom please for the love of fuck, wash your hands. I'm sure this is a 99/1 male thing, no one wants you touching anything we might touch with your musty dick sweat hands. WASH you lazy bastards. While I have to soap box may I also suggest, your cigar smells like a moldy bag of dicks that got ran over by truck carrying 1000 lbs of summer ass cheeks. And for you cigarette smokers out there thinking "I know cigars do stink" not so fast your death smoke smells like a rotting corpse of a cancer ridden cat. And if you think your skunk weed smells amazing. Just go fuck yourself.
I digress, as everyone knows by now in 2014 I had my brain exposed to the outside world thanks to a nasty little brain booger called an Acoustic Neuroma. Three years ago while on our Vegas trip I happened to read that someone else with an A.N. was visiting Vegas. She just threw it out there that anyone wanted to meetup could join her at Cabo Wabo. Her name is Marla and her husband Ken were visiting for a conference, so Elizabeth and I went and said hello. Well she also knew another AN survivor who happened to live in Vegas. His name Matt and to this day we still keep in touch. So the last three years Matt and I have made an effort to get together and have a nice bite to eat. Here we are after stuffing our faces with good Mexican food.
Well another year in the most bizarre place for Elizabeth and me. We have only ever been to the same place on vacation one other time, and it was Chicago. We love it here, and if your making plans for late March 2020 we will see you there. We can even help show you a thing or two.
Until next time friends,