We spent a lot of time on our feet yesterday. I, of course, started with a 3.1 mile run, as I do everyday. We then sat through a useless timeshare presentation and toured a couple of condos here at the Westgate Resort and Casino as part of the Interval International exchange program. In the future, we’ll either stay at the Bellagio, where we got married, or the Marriott Grand Chateau, as part of our Vacation Club. They both have far superior accommodations and better locations, but fulfilled our obligation to our friendly, personal concierge, Guy. We did get another case of water and a $100 credit voucher for wasting our time with him and his pushy bosses. I vow to never get trapped in another presentation, regardless of the circumstances.
We spent the afternoon and evening in Downtown Las Vegas. Our first stop was the Mob Museum that provided an interesting history of the city and the development of the casinos. It was then a short walk to the Neon Boneyard where all the old, rusty signs are on display. Many of them have been restored and some still work. The largest of those still working is the Hard Rock guitar that can be seen from the street. There was also artist Tim Burton’s fascinating exhibit Lost Vegas that includes several neon and character designs. In addition, we bought tickets for Brilliant, where the old signs are brought back to life through music and video projection. It was like a trip down memory lane from 50 years ago when I first visited the city.
The Fremont Street Experience was our next stop, as our feet began to ache. I’ve averaged about 24,000 steps a day since arriving 5 days ago (thanks in part to Advil), despite sitting (or more like stiffening-up) in the car for at least 7 hours on our round-trip to the Grand Canyon. We’ve covered all the sights that you rarely have time to do in typical 3-day stay. We’ve also managed to stay busy even though we were somewhat dreading a full week here. Instead, we’ve had time for the pool, pricey dining every night, Michael Jackson’s ONE at Mandalay Bay, the Bellagio Fountains & Wedding Chapel, unproductive gambling, the monorail, Westgate Sports Book, sleeping-in late (at least my wife), and lots of walking. Last night’s dinner was at Hugo’s Cellar directly below the Four Queens. It was a step-back-in-time with the continuing tradition of a rose for every lady. I was last there about 30 years ago. Prior to dinner, we watched the overhead video show and zip-liners. I also played video poker and hit “Four Queens” in the Four Queens casino. It was a small concession for previous and eventual losses.
Today, it’s the Titanic artifact exhibit at the Luxor in the afternoon and Joe’s Stone Crab at Caesar’s Palace for dinner. Our last night will include Edge Steakhouse and the Barry Manilow’s concert, both here at the Westgate. I can tell our time here is growing short because my medication and underwear are running low. We’ll undoubtedly be back again next year at a different location for a shorter stay to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. “Viva Las Vegas!”