Brindleboy123's Blog

WARNING! Long Blog!!!! Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Las Vegas!

Posted on: October 21, 2010

Well, before we start I’ll make a suggestion.  Pull up a chair, pour yourself a drink and be prepared……you could be here some time!  I’m watching and I’ll know if you log off ! Seriously, you know what I’m like once I get going so apologies before I start ‘cos I know I will just go on and on and on!

With the treat of a general strike in Spain on the 29th September, Tony and I left for the UK on the 28th just to make sure we were there and able to catch our flight on the 1st October to sunny Las Vegas!  We flew out early in the morning and for the first time in ages on a flight, I had someone to talk to! Also, it must have been the excitement of a holiday because for the first time in even longer, Tony actually didn’t go to sleep as soon as his bottom landed in the seat!

When we arrived in London we found the hotel shuttle and loaded up our cases on the bus to the Copthorne Gatwick Hotel.  What a lovely surprise…the room was gorgeous.  Four poster bed, lounge and even a spa bath! I loved the bed and had always wanted to sleep in a four poster.  Picture this though, there we are in bed (its ok, no need to censor), I’m thinking how romantic, turn around to look at Tony who says ” its like sleeping in a coffin with open sides”!  Lost the moment for me but had to agree, the silk top and curtains did resemble a coffin! We had 3 nights there and more importantly, we had 2 days to shop!  Day one and we went in to the nearest town which was Crawley. We had been warned by the girl in reception not to call it Creepy Crawley (hadn’t even thought of that until she said so).

The second day we went to Brighton.  We had booked the train tickets on line and got them at a really good price.  Brighton…it was the first time I had ever been there.  Tony had been there once before on his honeymoon but as it wasn’t when he married me we decided that didn’t count!  I was really surprised. It was clean and there were so many quaint little cafe’s.  We found a lovely french style cake shop where we had coffee and cake (ok, so it was only an hour or so after breakfast but we were on holiday!).  Next stop….Marks and Spencers.  Now for all you lot that have Marks and Spencers in the town, this will sound really stupid but when you live in a place where the biggest shop is the local supermarket and where the largest size for a younger woman is probably a size 8 (Spanish girls don’t have breasts as you may be aware), going in to Marks and Spencers is my dream (and Tony’s nightmare). I went from rail to rail telling Tony how much I really “needed” that new dress!

We walked along the beach and even went on the pier.  I think next year, if possible, I would like to go over and spend more time in Brighton.  Perhaps stay there for a week or so. There were certainly some sights to be seen….I saw one “man” who I have to admit had a better figure than me (not difficult to achieve nowadays) and he looked absolutely gorgeous in his red mini skirt and black top! Lots of girls seemed to have a gay friend with them and I told Tony I felt a bit left out!  In Yate’s bar we met Barry….well, didn’t actually meet him but just sat and watched as his “relationship” blossomed with some good-looking lad until the intimacy got a little too intimate for me, while I was eating sausage and mash anyway! Yes, really enjoyed our day there…good on ‘ya Brighton.

Third day we took the bus again to Cr…… Crawley.  We actually started off deciding to look around the village of Copthorne but when we asked someone who lived there where the centre of the village was, and they said we were actually in it, we decided that perhaps another trip to Crawley might be a better idea. Can’t say I really liked Crawley (sorry if you live there), not too many people seemed to be very happy as they trudged along the streets but who knows what problems they have so it’s not my place to judge.  It seemed to be quite a poor town and certainly the Pound Shop was doing a rolling trade.  Lots of what seemed to be very young girls with babies in prams and toddlers running along by the side. Life didn’t look easy for many and many looked quite sad. It made me think very hard about how fortunate I was to be able to have such a wonderful holiday ahead of me.

That night Tony and I had every alarm possible geared up to go off at some unearthly time in the morning! Reception, television alarm, phone and telephone alarm…at 4.30 we were running around like headless chickens turning off alarms and answering phones assuring people that we were up and about!  Who wants to spend too long in a silk coffin anyway!!

Suitcases packed off we went back to Gatwick.  We headed straight for the Virgin desk and decided to take an upgrade to Premium Economy.  That gave Tony a bit of extra leg room – being 6’2″ he needs all the room he can get!  Off then to the Number One lounge where we had breakfast, free coffee and any drink you could possibly want, papers, television and internet all free.  Well worth the £17.50 it cost.  Thoroughly recommend it if you are travelling from Gatwick.  By the time you pay for a breakfast there and a couple of coffees you have more than covered the cost of using the lounge.

What a flight!!  Horrendous…so much for a better seat!  The chair in front of mine was broken and I spent most of the flight pushing the young girl back up out of my lap!  Banged my toe and the television didn’t work – not that I could see it anyway because most of the time it was underneath me!  Unfortunately there weren’t any other seats available so I just had to suffer it for 10 very long and boring hours! I got off the plane feeling a bit like a stuffed turkey.  They may not be able to give you a good seat but at least I was well fed!

I was really surprised when we landed at how close the hotels are to the airport.  You can see the Luxor and Mandalay as the plane lands and it is easy within walking distance if you could only walk across the runway.  We were staying at the Venetian which was the other end of the strip and dutifully walked to the airport shuttle bus stop as instructed. There we met Big Bertha!  Bertha arranged for our shuttle bus, it wasn’t the one we were set up to get but I certainly wasn’t going to argue with her!  If Bertha said the Showtime Bus was for me, then Showtime it was!

The Venetian is an absolutely beautiful hotel.  Very difficult to describe to be honest, the inside looks like Venice with gondolas sailing through.  The ceiling is done to look like the sky which is does. Tony didn’t even realise at one point that he was still inside!  When we entered our room I was amazed.  It was really bigger than our flat here in Spain! We had 3 televisions…..even one in the bathroom! Hopefully I will be able to attach some photos so you can see for yourselves.  The big window overlooked Ceasers Palace, The Bellagio and Paris Hotel amongst others.  Even the curtains had a remote and Tony and I were still finding light switches on the last day! Total opulence.

Then there are the casino’s.  Each hotel has its casino and they are huge places.  Slot machines, card tables, roulette…you name it and you can probably bet on it there.  The amount of money that changes hands would probably keep many charities going for years and years.  Unbelieveable! Our first night there I watched as one man lost $800. Nothing to many but a fortune to many.  When you join the casino (which is free) they give you credit to spend on the slot machines.  I’m glad to report that Tony and I used only these credits and probably just 5 – 10 dollars! I think we actually were up by about 5 dollars or so for the whole holiday!

We looked around the rest of the hotel, correction, we looked around part of the hotel.  By the end of our holiday I would still not be able to find my way around that hotel alone.  There were lots of wonderful shops there but way out of our price range on the whole,  Prada, Chanel, Dior….not a C & A in sight! (we still have C & A in Spain you know)!

On Saturday we found a shopping centre across the road which was part of Ceasers Palace.  I did my best to fit in with the crowd but the fact that I discovered my dress was on back to front half way through the day probably didn’t do much to help!  We found ourselves (no, Tony headed for) Johnny Rockets!  They make the best burgers and milkshakes that side of the Atlantic and Tony wasn’t going to waste a minute longer before his order was in for a double Johnny Rocket and Peanut/Jelly milkshake.  I had Apple Pie and a coffee…..I was offered cheese to go with it but that was a bit to strange for me!

There are ticket shops in Las Vegas where you can queue to get reduced priced tickets for shows etc.  We joined the line there and managed to get tickets for Joan Rivers the following night.  Saved around 40% of the ticket price so it was well worth doing.

Joan Rivers, what a lady (I use the term very loosely!). She had us both in stitches from the minute she walked on the stage.  Her act is to tell you that she is preparing for her act (following me?). She says who she wants in the theatre and who should leave..just so hilarious.  Says she doesn’t like thin people…and told the joke about Victoria Beckham asking David if her tampon made her look fat!!!   I guess Joan Rivers wouldn’t appeal to everyone but she was a hit for me and I can highly recommend her show to anyone.

Ceasers Palace has a replica of the Trevi Fountain and we through our dollars in there (reluctantly ‘cos I had a feeling we may need them later in the holiday!) and made our wishes.  I can’t tell you what I wished for but I can tell you that since I have returned home my wish has already come true in part and when a certain person gives me the ok, I will share this wonderful news. We also watched the free show in Ceasers Palace of the Children from Atlantis  http://www.vegas.com/attractions/on_the_strip/fountainshow.html. Looked around the pool area which surprisingly is open to everyone, even those not staying at the hotel.  All the other hotels that we visited restricted their pool area to guests only.  When our feet stopped moving, we flipped and flopped back to our hotel and spent the rest of the time around our pool.  Well, eventually we did.  We actually moved 5 times before Tony found the “ideal” spot by which time the sun was going down and it was almost time to go back in anyway! There are Cabanas around the pool which you can hire….only $300  a day mid week!!! Can you believe it there were loads that were being rented, quite often by youngsters, perhaps “Daddy” helped!  Each Cabana has its own internet link and that was how I managed to send the odd email when I was away…..I picked up their wifi…naughty but believe me, they weren’t using the internet they were too interested in their Margaritas!

Whilst we were at Ceasers we also bought tickets for Cher.  Great show and she looked stunning.  My only complaint there was that there was a lot of video shown so that she had time to change outfits.  I would have much preferred that she kept the same dress on and just sang.  She was excellent though.  Programmes for the show were on sell at $40 each!!!  On the way home from Cher we stopped and had a foot long hotdog…..my man knows how to treat a girl! The strip is very busy at night, people all over the place.  Lots of Mexicans stand on the edge of the pavement trying to give you tickets for “girly shows”…

Following day we decided to go for a walk to the other end of the strip to see the Stratesphere Hotel which we had been told was worth a visit.  Don’t bother!  It seemed like miles to walk and when we got there we found it to be rather dirty and really not very special.  The hotel was charging $32 to go to the top of the tower but we didn’t bother –  I figured we had just as good a view from our room anyway.  On the way back a pair of red shoes called me and I was pulled in to a shop to buy them!!! I tried on what I thought were a lovely blue pair but Tony seemed to think I looked like one of those Roundabout Guards I told you about before, so reluctantly I left them behind.

Next day we visited the Bellagio Hotel.  Wow! Spectacular hotel with truely wonderful fountains that dance to the songs from people such as Frank Sinatra.  We discovered later that there are 17 people employed purely to keep the fountains flowing. Apparently the takings in the casino at the Bellagio go down by up to $million when the fountains are not working so every effort is made to ensure that they keep going.

After the Bellagio we visited the Flamingo Hotel.  Friends of ours were married there and we were keen to see the chapel.  It was beautiful.  The gardens of the Flamingo are like a small oasis in the middle of a crazy town.  Finished our day off at Denny’s with endless pancakes…literally, when you finish they come and give you more!  I only managed 3 but that was quite good.  Tony managed a few more than me! That night on the strip we found yet another shopping centre called the Mile Shops…..we walked and walked and walked! Finished up in a restaurant that looked nothing from outside but where I had the best steak I have ever had in my life!

The following day we had a walk to the Paris Hotel which has a replica of the Eiffel Tower   http://www.parislasvegas.com/casinos/paris-las-vegas/casino-misc/eiffel-tower-detail.html.  We paid to go to the very top where we were rewarded with wonderful views of the whole of Las Vegas.  We were talking to the man operating the life who has worked in Las Vegas for 23 years.  He was telling us how much it had changed over the years and that it is nothing like it was when he originally arrived.  Apparently, he said that the people there that make the most money are the doormen at the big hotels.  They are earning around $80,000 a year for opening the door and opening the boot on cars!  Everyone tips them and in places like the Bellagio etc, tips are good; very good!

After visiting MGM grand hotel the next day and seeing the lions which they have there, we went to the Rainforest Cafe where, as he did years ago when we were in the same chain of restaurant in Disney, Tony left his bag on the chair! Fortunately for us it was still there when we returned to collect it! Men!

Back to the pool afterwards.  People watching….you know, Las Vegas is really a very different world from the one I live in and not one where I would want to be for anything longer than a couple of weeks.  Everyone there (with some exceptions) seems to be so “plastic”.  I was looking around and many of the women have, false eye lashes, hair extensions, false nails, false teeth (or whatever it is they do to make them look like white sugar lumps) and as for boobs, well every sizer and shape was on display!  They don’t move when they walk and point to the sun!  Every elderly man there seems to have his trophy young attractive woman on his arm and the cynic in me wondered if they would be there if the men didn’t have a wallet the size of the encyclopedia Britannica!  That said, there were also a lot of women where the back doesn’t match the front – you know the ones, we’ve talked about them before.  From the back you think they are about 20, long blond hair, legs that don’t end and clothes that look fabulous – then they turn around and they look like their face has been screwed up and ironed out!  Badly!

We went to see the BlueMan that night.  if you ever get the chance, this is a show that you must see.  I was a bit sceptical thinking it was going to be a lot of noise and men playing drums…I couldn’t have been more wrong.  Thoroughly enjoyed it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LOL8-qIYemg

We took the bus the next day to Downtown Las Vegas http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cok0B0y_wBE.  Catching a bus there is so easy and you pay just $7 for a 24 hour ticket.  Nobody checks the ticket when you board the bus but I guess if you are caught without one at any time there would be an appropriate fine…not sure how that works.  You have to buy the ticket before you can board the bus from machines next to the bus stops.  We went to a shopping outlet where there was 70% of the price of most things.  This brought the prices down to a more reasonable level as most stores there were so very expensive.  As you enter the various shops the salespeople constantly greet you and 9/10 ask where you were from.  When we told one young man that we were living in Spain but were originally from the UK he called us “Transplants”!  I like that…!!!

We used the same ticket to go back to Downtown (Freemont Street) on the evening.  Its bright, very bright.  People everywhere trying to entice you into the various casinos and the food seemed to be a lot cheaper too.  I thought it was sad though that so many of the casino’s had such young girls on the doors dressed (or not dressed as the case may be) to bring you in.  I even saw one young girl dressed in not much more than a bikini and some glitter who must have been at least 6 months pregnant!  Freemont street wasn’t for us and to be honest, I didn’t really feel that safe there.  We stayed about an hour or so and then back on the bus to “the strip”!

Back in the queue the next day for our tickets for the show Zumanity.  WOW!  It is certainly an adults only show  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2nS4IoDH29g If you ever get the opportunity to see one of the Cirque de solei shows, go!  We thoroughly enjoyed this one although I think it was a bit too near the mark for some people as a couple did walk out!

Our last show was The Jersey Boys.  We were tapping our feet all the way through this show…it was wonderful.

Final bit of entertainment for us was a visit to the Grand Canyon.  We decided to go on the coach as the flight on the helicopter worked out at over 1,000 dollars!  Ridiculous!  The coach trip was really good as it gave us the opportunity to ask the guide questions.  We had lunch there served by the indians that actually own the land that holds the Canyon. I decided I would do the “skywalk”.  Tony, who has a fear of heights despite the fact that in the army he used to hang out of helicopters, decided he wouldn’t do the skywalk so off I went on my own. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34lVCd5QcAo  It was amazing! Your first step is a bit daunting, you just look down and its 4,000 feet below you…! When you are on it though it is like nothing else.  Just looking around I could understand at that moment why so many of the indians didn’t want to have it put up for fear that it would spoil the landscape.  It was peaceful and I stood there alone for a while in my thoughts, talking to Mum, Dad, Uncle Bill and dear old Miss Daisey. The funny thing was thought that when we got back into Las Vegas a couple of hours later, we walked over the bridge back to the hotel and there were the usual people begging for money etc.  One chap was playing an accordian and I couldn’t believe what he was playing…….How Great Thou Art.  It’s a hymn that is very special to the family and was played at the funeral of my Dad, Mum, Uncle Bill and Miss Daisey.  How strange that there should be someone in the middle of Las Vegas playing that! Needless to say, the man had a better supper that night on me!

The rest of our time in Las Vegas we basically chilled out and wound down ready for the long journey home.  We really weren’t looking forward to the trip back, 10 hours is such a long time to sit still…it is for me anyway.  I watch some people on the plane and they just seem to be able to sit there, quietly watching a film.  Not me, I must be the biggest fidget ever!  My legs are up, down underneath me…I stand up, sit down, head to the left, right and even on the table!  I just can’t seem to sit still, I think I probably drive most people mad.  Saying that though, I had a “spreader” next to me on the way home!  She got on and for the first 10 minutes I would only have recognised her rear end as it was in my face most of the time as she sorted herself out!  Then later, if I dared to move an arm, she was in….arms all over the place to the point that at one time I was beginning to think she wanted my babies!  Thankfully, sleep found her and apart from the odd snore and playing footsie under my blanket…yuck, move your leg woman!, she did sleep most of the trip.

Tony managed to watch about 4 films on the way home which saved the plane from a fete worse than I don’t know what….if he had slept, everyone would have been awake!  Imagine the worse thunder storm ever and you will have a rough idea of what it is like when he is in full flow!  Bless him…one of his endearing features!

When we got back to London we caught the hotel shuttle back to the hotel we had booked just for the night….the thought of flying again that day would have been too much.  The Mercure Gatwick was our hotel for the night.  The foyer looked lovely when we arrived, as for the room….well, the bed was clean but I think they must have had a woodpecker in the bedroom, not much left of the wardrobe corners…most of it had been eaten away!  Still it was just a bed for the night.

We couldn’t just stay in the room so we got changed, found a taxi and ……back to CRAWLEY!  M & S for coffee and sandwhich!  Had a good look around again (well, it would have been wrong not to wouldn’t it!).  Then the bus back to the hotel, complete with new suitcases to replace the ones that seemed to have gone to battle on the trip back from Las Vegas!  Poor Tony spent about an hour trying to sort out the cases and making sure that there was the correct amount of weight in each!  My knickers were going from case to case! When we had finished and completely exhausted ourselves, we phoned for a pizza and had that delivered to the hotel!! Never done anything like that in my life but have to say, quite enjoyed it!  I think Tony finished it off at about 3 in the morning when I woke up….well, it would be rude to let him sleep when I was awake wouldn’t it!

It was so nice to get home on Sunday afternoon!  The sun was shining and normality returned…no more slot machines, no more channel bags and the bin dippers out and about! Our little flat was all intact and clean as we’d given it a good sort out before we left.  The worse part of holidaying has to be unpacking when you get home!  We managed this in quite good time and the washing piles filled most of the floor!  Didn’t take long though and the flat soon looked like home again.

On Monday we picked up the 3 Muskateers.  Seems like they were well behaved, with the exception of the wee wee kid (who isnt now apparently …wee wee kid I mean), Fiona that looked after them said that Lola reminded her of the busy body on Emerdale Farm….Edna?  Didn’t leave Bobby alone for 5 minutes apparently!  Fat Albert was pleased to see us but a bit angry because we had been away!  Bobby, well he was just Bobby and kissed us all over and looked with pleading eyes not to do it again!

So, that is it…we have travelled, spent and returned home.  There have been times in my life when, after a holiday, I have dreaded coming home and getting life back to normal.  This time, I am pleased to say that I am quite happy to be home.  I love the normality of people here.  It was nice to be spoilt in the hotel but it is so much better to live in the “real” world with real people!

Wake up!!!…yes you, didn’t drop off reading this did you!!!!

I’m sure there will be other bits and pieces that I will remember over the coming weeks to bore you all with! In the meantime, hope you have managed to get through to the end of this blog in one piece.

Take care everyone…..before you know it, it will be Sunday and I can do another blog!!!!

Keep smiling…glad to be back with you all and hoping that everyone is well.

Bell x

“It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts to build a home” Author Unknown

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8 Responses to "WARNING! Long Blog!!!! Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Las Vegas!"

Loved reading your Vegas blog, its a place I would love to visit and you brought it all to life for me, the shows sound amazing!

What, no CSI !!!!

Glad to have yu back, sounds as though you had a wonderful time.

And remember, “Apple pie without cheese, is like a kiss without a squeeze” lol;lol;lol

It really is an amazing place Nilla but it just isn’t “real”! Well, it obviously is real, but the people there are in a very different world! I’m don’t think I would like to live in their world…sure the money would be nice, but …nah, I like my life just the way it is!

Love Bell x

I have to hear exactly what Juliette thinks about this??

Williams
aaa insurance company

Ummmm…lost me, who is Juliette, come to think of it, who is Williams?!

Is it me????? What ever this is about…its gone right over my head!

my sister is an addict on Slot Machines, she always play any kind of game on the slot machine ~,`

Not a good thing!!! I didn’t mind playing them when it was free from the casino’s but was surprised how many people would stay on the slots for hour after hour…..the casino’s must love your sister! Thank you for reading the blog.

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