Tuesday, December 27, 2005

A day in Sin City of the world ...

Some things in life are just unbelievable!!

My first attempt to go see Las Vegas was a major nightmare. I met with an accident on my way to vegas and spent next 2 months in the hospital. I went through a skin grafting surgeory on my left hand and the mark will remain on my hand probably forever.

and today, after only about 7 months since my accident, I have just returned from an incredible visit to las vegas. Things could not have been better for me in this successful visit. Before the accident, Las Vegas, was just another sightseeing attraction to me. But, past the accident, it had become a special place. Luckily, I got the opprtunity way before I expected. I jumped on it.

The long weekend of Thanksgiving, 2005, me and 2 of my very good friends decided to go hike in the Grand Canyon and spend some time in the Las vegas on our way back to Bay Area. We had a successful hike in the canyon and reached Las Vegas on nice n sunny saturday afternoon. We had about 20 hours to spend in the city and had a room booked in one of the hotels on the strip itself.

Since we came from Arizona, the very famous Hoover dam was right on the way and we had a nice break there. My earlier impression about Colorado river, from what I saw in the canyon was not very good. I thought the river is too small and is overhyped. But, after seeing this Dam, I realized that the river is actually pretty huge on the other side of the dam. The location and the architecture of the dam is really some smart piece of engineering work. This dam is serving most of the cities in Nevada and Arizona including las Vegas.

As we were getting closer to the city, the sight of high rise Hotels on the strip was really attractive. Most of the big/famous cities in the world are located near a river/sea; The place where Las Vegas is located is in the midst of desert and you could just wonder how much efforts are put in to get the basic infrastructure needed for this city. Although the City is not too big, If you drive about 30 miles in any direction from Vegas strip you can only see the endless desert around you. But in the city, its really happening.

Vegas really Rocks! You will see casinos, hotels everywhere. The entire city lives on gambling/entertainment/partying business. People come there from all over the world to blow out some cash. They want to get married in Vegas, we saw a couple walking on the strip who just got married in one of the hotels. We also saw few high rise condominium apartment complexs which I learnt is a new concept there now. To make this place attractive and to maintain that, I think a lot depends on the construction business there, I wont be surprised if some really bright civil engineers have a dream to build something in Vegas.

All the action is around a street named Las Vegas Boulevard and more popularly known as The Strip. About 1.5 miles of the strip has big hotels lined up on it. All these hotels depict a theme. Some of the themes include Paris, Alladin, MGM, New York among many others. very creative designs to depict such themes makes it a big attraction and its really a treat to watch. Most of the saturday evening we spent walking on the strip and watching these hotels. We went inside a few of them, the things to do insight are pretty much the same. There is gambling, sports bars, pubs in all these hotels. All of them also host entertainment shows to attract more people to their hotels. These hotels also host some free shows outside and around the hotels to attract people. This time not all the hotels were running these shows. But, we got to see the volcano show which was really exotic.

Its a crime not to gamble in Vegas, at least the first time you go. Its a damn good experience. I went around the gambling hall in MGM for a loong time and finally decided to try my luck with roulette. I was watching others play, win a lot and loose a lot. I decided to change the table and put my $10 bill on the table. The lady said, "denominations of 10 sir??" "yes! I would like to start small " ;)! I decided to play on the colors, than the numbers, the probability of winning was still 50%, but the multiplying factor was only 2.

As they say, you will probably win the first time, and thats what happened. I placed my $10 on the red and red it was. I now got 2 coins. Unfortunately, the next few rounds didnt go well for me and I lost both the coins in next 2 rounds. I walked away with loss of $10. I found it very tempting though and now can imagine how gambling can make a life or completely ruin it.

Apart from these big names there are lot of others things that one can do on the strip. We checked out Harley Davidson cafe and Margaritta bar where there were special celebration going on for Thanksgiving. I could not have left vegas without buying a souvenier. Walking down the strip itself was a lot of fun. We were on the strip till about 9 pm. After that, we did a lot of stuff which I am not going to talk about here.

Las Vegas has everything for everyone. I am not sure how many people will go there again n again if they are not interested in gambling. But, I thought its a place for me and I am surely going to go back there and get even on the money I lost, hopefully!

I was really happy to have worked this trip very well in terms of everything. I had just imagined this same good time in las vegas the first time I started. Things went wrong that time and they went all the way I wanted this time. Its just unbelievable !!

Oh wait! please dont ask me about what I did on that saturday night in Vegas, Its a sin city, you know, and ....


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