We spent three days there all in all and if I'm honest, I wasn't really a fan. I was really quite relieved to get out of there yesterday, not only for the heat but mainly for the sheer hedonistic excess of the place. However like in everyone I meet and everything I do, I like to try and find the good stuff, so I'll try and write a little about that first.
Of all the things that Vegas has got so so wrong, it's impossible to deny that it really is a testament to man's skill and creativity in architecture. Seriously, in the space of a couple of miles you can visit the Eiffel Tower, New York City and King Arthur's Castle. It's completely nuts.
Before I'd visited, I'd heard stories that people wouldn't leave their hotels at all, and it's easy to see why. Each one is like it's own little city with shops and casinos and pools and shows and the best air-conditioning ever in the world ever. One even has its own aquarium and another a roller coaster! We spent an entire day just exploring the hotels and ended up walking for about 11/12 hours (we guesstimated about ten miles in the blistering -literally for our feet! - 43*C heat).
Little did we know that this was an UNDERestimate.
I also have to say that it was a pretty awesome place to go out at night. On the second day, after raiding an outlet store in the morning and a visit to the 'Welcome to Vegas' sign that nearly killed us, we decided to conserve our energy for the rest of the day and re-explore at night.
We went for dinner at a place called 'Bubba Gump' which is a shrimp restaurant based on Forrest Gump which was super yummy and had a killer view of the strip.
For me I suppose Vegas was an experience, but not necessarily one I'd like to repeat, because for all its star quality, there's so much about it that makes me want to cry a little inside. It's (to use Greg's favourite phrase) an affront to nature, in that it is so unnatural. None of what Vegas is, is an attribution to the beautiful scenery that surrounds it and its excessive energy waste is so ridiculous I had to fight back my inner eco warrior from going on a rampage. It's basically a giant adult playground, that promotes so many things that are wrong with humanity, from the objectification of women to the ignorance of those in poverty - there were people gambling away $1000s in the casino and others starving on the streets outside. That was probably the most painful to watch.
I think it's safe to say that I've done enough of Vegas for one life time, though I can't say I regret going. I think it's a completely unique experience in itself and I'm glad I got to see it (and even gamble a whole dollar myself!)
We're now in Los Angeles after a loooong bus ride (actually it was only 6 hours but I'm out of practice) in the coolest hostel. It's called The Mansion, and as the name suggests it's big white mansion, with the main housed furnished in such a rustic style, we were genuinely confused about what time period we were in. It's also run by the loveliest people who make a killer breakfast (are there any other qualities to look for in a person?) I think we're off to Hollywood today with a couple of guys we met in the hostel, so hopefully it should prove pretty exciting :)