Sunday, February 6, 2011

Wandering in Vegas

We didn't intend to walk the streets of Vegas until almost midnight.
We'd gone to see the Donny & Marie show thinking we'd catch a cab ride home. (Whoa, expensive!)
We were in Las Vegas to see my grandsons in the Blackjack gymnastics tournament, My daughter drove. She dropped us off around 5 p.m. after we'd assured her that we were grownups and could find our way back to our hotel.
All was looking good when we came out of the show at 9:15 p.m. In fact, we had time to spare, enough so we could pop back and check out the Fine Art Gallery at the Bellagio.
I hesitated because Las Vegas was so crowded and the casinos are SO big that I figured it wouldn't be as easy as it appeared. I was right. It wasn't easy. But Marc said we'd be fine.
First, we had to get across the street from the Flamingo to the Bellagio, no small feat considering the masses and the fact that the entrances to the walkways are hidden in the depths of the buildings.
Then the gallery was way back inside and after we walked for many lengths, it was closed.
Back to the street. Now we had to find the monorail to get us to the shuttle stop at Mandalay Bay.
We looked around. Hmmm. We could try and get across the street again and back up to Bally's or head south to the next stop.
"I'm sure there's one just right over here," Marc said confidently. "It won't be far."
We started off. And we walked. And walked. Eventually we realized there were no stations.
"I guess the next one is at the MGM," Marc said.
I sighed. It was a really long ways off but on we trudged.
Finally we reached the MGM but I knew the monorail station was in the back of the casino. We went in, mostly because it was carpeted and my feet were killing me from the concrete.
We walked and walked. We found the monorail. It had now been an hour since we left the Flamingo.
We bought tickets ($5 each). We climbed stairs. We waited. We hoped.
But something was wrong. We could only find the northbound train.
"Where's a southbound?" we asked the guards.
There is no southbound. The monorail only goes north from the MGM.
"But you can catch a free tram from the Excalibur. Follow the signs to Studio 54," the guard said.
We walked, again all through the casino and out the door, down more stairs, up more stairs, over the walkway and into the Excalibur. We followed more signs and found the tram.
(It quits coming at 10:30 p.m. and it was now 10:45.)
Fortunately, no one told the tram or the rest of the passengers waiting.
We boarded. We rode along. We thought we were saved.
Now all we had to do was find our shuttle — bearing in mind that the last one came at 11:15 p.m.
We went up. We went down. We waited. It got late so we called our hotel. The shuttle had been and gone but would come back.
We asked for directions. We followed more signs. We went down again and out.
Finally, at 11:30 p.m. we climbed on board our hotel's shuttle and rode home in frustrated silence.
What had started as a nice night in Vegas had become a nightmare.
The only thing good about it is that it's now in the past and it's mostly Marc's fault. He'll be making up for this for awhile.

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