In 2010, I went to Las Vegas with some lady friends for a Spring Break of sorts. Almost exactly three years later—last Thursday through yesterday—I visited again with Paul.
Despite going for the same amount of time, and around the same time of year, it’s amazing how different the two Vegas experiences were.* A comparison:
Then: Five girls crammed into a standard-size room in the MGM. Um, cozy?
Now: Paul and I in a beautiful suite in The Cosmopolitan, which didn’t even exist the last time I was in Vegas. The view!
Then: I barely remember it. We ate at the Luxor buffet one day, which was probably the most depressing hour of the vacation.
Now: All we did was eat. And all of it was worlds beyond whatever I gorged on at the Luxor. So many great restaurants in The Cosmopolitan.
Then: Five Hour Energy and vodka, sometimes from a flask. We would also play video poker to get free drinks, then cash out as soon as the drink was served. Classy!
Now: Espresso when tired. And among the excellent drinks I had: a Ballast Point Sculpin IPA; a brunchtime Bloody Mary and mimosa; and the Cereal Bowl, a boozy milkshake with Captain Crunch mixed in.
Then: We sat through a day-long timeshare presentation to score free tickets to the Blue Man Group, which was awesome.
Now: We paid to see Cee Lo Green’s new show, Loberace, which was awesome.
Then: I ran once up and down the Strip, for a total of about six very slow miles. And that’s only if you consider weaving through packs of drunk people to wait at the next traffic light “running.”
Now: I completed the Red Rock Canyon Marathon, but that’s a topic for a later post. For now, check out this beaut of a course.
Then: Plenty of clubs were eager to invite a group of ladies to hang out and dance, free of charge. Plus, we were younger then. We went out Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights.
Now: Paul and I were so tired from the jet lag, the eating, and the 3:30 a.m. wake-up on Saturday that we were in bed before 11 p.m. every night except the first one (when we were only awake to see Cee Lo).
The Free Time
Then: We did the tourist thing in a major way. We walked to all corners of the Strip, explored Fremont Street, and did a decent amount of gambling.
Now: We spent a lot of time sitting around the suite, watching bad TV and digesting. The result: Paul wants us to audition for Wipeout.
The Company We Kept
Then: We saw ridiculous drunk people stumbling around at 4 a.m. because we had also been out until 4 a.m.
Now: We got weird looks from said revelers as we walked to catch the 4:30 a.m. bus to the marathon start.
Then: “That was fun, but four nights in Vegas is about as much as I can take.”
Now: “That was fun, but four nights in Vegas is about as much as I can take.”
Then: “I’m good. I never need to go back to Vegas again.”
Now: I’m not much of a gambler, and I’ve crossed off Nevada in my 50 States Marathon quest, so I’m not in a rush to get back to Vegas. But, our hotel had a lot of cool stuff coming up, including a ton of poolside indie shows. If I were to return, it’d be to take in one (or a few) of those, during a warmer part of the year when poolside lounging would be an option.
*Granted, Paul was on business to some extent, so we were able to do some things we would not have been able to do under normal circumstances.