Monday, June 15, 2009

What Happened in Vegas...

It all began on Thursday as a little trip to Utah because Mr. Right wanted to show the Duchess and I where he spent part of his childhood and so he could visit the cemetery where his father is buried.

I was not super jazzed to be going. The lack of jazziness was due primarily to the fact that I loathe car trips. My limit in the car is about four hours. Anything past that and my ass begins to go numb and my brain follows shortly thereafter.

The drive was long, but as we left Arizona and headed into Utah, it became beautiful as well. It was fantastic to see a green world again and to see water running along side the road that wasn't being pumped into concrete canals like it is here in the desert. Ahhh...water.

Mt. Tipanogos, Utah Valley

In Utah, we stayed with an old friend of Mr. Right's and had a nice time driving around visiting old childhood haunts and talking. I did not, however, enjoy sleeping on the Aerobed and being high centered all night which resulted in waking up with a sore back and with my bum shoulder aching. I had to self medicate with Ibuprofen and beer. No liquor within miles. Utah. What a crock.

Saturday night we decided that it might be fun to take a different route home and drive through Las Vegas and spend the night. So, being the Internet savvy gal that I am, I quickly and quite efficiently, booked a room online at Planet Hollywood for Sunday night. Shazam.

We rolled out of Provo on Sunday around noon and headed to the cemetery a few miles outside of town.

I don't know about Mr. Right, but I got a little emotional at the cemetery. This particular cemetery is located smack dab in the middle of Nowhere and contains maybe 200 grave sites. As we pulled up to the site where Mr. Right's father is buried, we realized that there was no marker there. This made me incredibly sad for Mr. Right. He'd come prepared with a letter he'd written with the intention of leaving it there for his father. There was no place to put it.

I left Mr. Right alone with his letter and walked around the cemetery with The Duchess. When I saw that Mr. Right had concluded his business, we walked over and I saw that he had found a stone and had placed his letter under it in the space a headstone should have been. The Duchess had picked some Dandelions for me and I walked over and tucked their stems under the stone with the letter. The whole thing made me want to put Mr. Right on my lap and rock him and hold him tight.

With Utah behind us, we headed into Nevada and set the GPS for Planet Hollywood.

View from the pool at Planet Hollywood

Arriving in the lobby with luggage in tow, we waited...and waited...and waited, to check in. Upon presenting our online reservation to the person behind the counter, we were told that it was ever so lovely that we had a reservation, but that it was for NEXT weekend. What?! Oh, shit.

My "Great Rate!" room which I'd so efficiently booked on Travelocity quickly became the "Rate From Hell." Apparently, the hotel was quite full and they only had the swankier rooms available. Swanky will break the bank, people. Yes, we could have hauled ass out of there, but we'd committed to have fun, dammit, and fun we would have. Or not.

The room was great, yes, and we were having a jolly good time bouncing around on the beds, but it soon became apparent by the bellowing in our stomachs, that it was time to forage for food.

The "Strip" was packed. Throngs of sweaty people in ghastly clothing, walking through millions of pieces of business card sized pornography (hide your eyes, Duchess!) and so much trash that my inner clean freak began to actually freak. In order to just "Let's get somewhere dammit and eat," we decided to take advantage of the coupon for dinner that had been thrust into our hands by a scantily clad person of dubious gender while we were waiting for the "walk" sign to give us the go ahead.

So, off to the Hawaiian Tropic Zone we went. I'll give you the condensed version of dinner: Fajitas x 2. One kids meal. 2 cocktails. Two sodas. One coupon for "Free entree with purchase of entree." Ninety six dollars. Yes. You read that correctly. $96.00. With a coupon. The food was below average and my $13 cocktail was served in a plastic cup. Classy.

This is what a $13 cocktail looks like

After clutching my chest and doing my best impersonation of Red Foxx on Sanford & Son, we paid the bill and headed to M&M World to appease The Duchess. We'd promised her a swim in the pool, but the hour it took us to check in had burned up our pool time. So, we bribed her with chocolate.

We blazed through four stories of every imaginable M&M related item in about 15 minutes flat, scooping up an M&M dispenser, hand held fan, mini set of binoculars, drinking cup with silly straw and a giant bag of multi-colored M&Ms personally selected by The Duchess from the massive Wall-O-M&Ms on the second floor. At the register, the dude behind the counter happily informed us that we'd spent enough money to qualify for a free candy dispenser for only five dollars. "How much did we spend" we asked? With chocolaty breath he bubbled, "$71.00!"

Sweet mother of all that is holy. How much can fucking M&Ms cost?! Apparently, in Vegas, they cost $12.95 a pound. So, we threw in the other dispenser for $5.00. What the hell.

As we tumbled into our swanky beds that night, my brain kept running through the receipts of the day and I must tell you, my brain was having a panic attack. After convincing Brain to settle down and chill out, I cozied up under the blankets and began drifting off into the Land of....SLAM! *Giggle, giggle, hiccup, moo, giggle, snort*

Yes, Dear Friends. Our next door neighbors had arrived. They'd just come from a wedding and it was midnight. The party was on.

For the next four hours, I listened to a full on version of the, We're in Vegas, We're Drunk off our Asses, and We are the Most Fabulous and Funny People on the Planet Show. I've never heard so many people crack themselves up so damn loudly before in my life. (Except me that one time at IHOP, but no one was trying to sleep ten feet away. I assume the kitchen staff was awake because I got my Big Country Breakfast in no time flat.)

At about 3:00 a.m. Mr. Right called security. At about 4:00 a.m. Mr. Right called security. At about 9:30 a.m. I woke up and swore revenge on the bridesmaid cows next door and on Planet Hollywood.

Breakfast: Delicious. I had eggs & bacon, Mr. Right had French toast, The Duchess had the short stack of pancakes and we made it out of there for a mere $61.00. Holy shit. "Hold on, Elizabeth! I'm comin'!"

As I was rubbing my temples and repeating under my breath, "Holy shit, I hate Vegas, holy shit," I looked up and saw a familiar face. I did a double take and jumped half way out of my seat. It was Holly Madison. No, not Dolly Madison, the cupcake girl, Holly Madison. You know, Hugh Hefner's ex-girlfriend and star of the Girls Next Door?! Oh, c'mon! That show was one of my dirty little secrets that I was a wee bit ashamed of admitting that I loved. I recorded every episode. Don't judge me.

The lovely Holly Madison

(It turns out she was at Planet Hollywood preparing for her role in the new show, Peepshow, beginning next week.)

Anyway, the Holly sighting redeemed Vegas for me momentarily. She walked three feet in front of me wearing her signature tube socks and shorts and little pink velour hoodie. She had no makeup on and was accompanied by her little doggy on a leash. She headed straight into Starbucks and once she had coffee in hand (a Venti), she cruised right back by me as I was still recovering from a seizure that consisted of me bouncing up and down in my seat and grinning from ear to ear saying, "Oh my god!! I can't believe I just saw Holly Madison! Oh my god!"

Oh...and we temporarily stole the Blackberry of one of the over sized bridesmaid heifers from the party next door. That made me feel a little better as well. We'd found it under the newspaper next to our door that morning (and next to the three giant boxes of empty booze bottles) and decided to just hold onto it for a bit. When we checked out at 1 o'clock that afternoon, we took it to the concierge and dropped it off without saying anything except, "We found this in the hall."

Take that, Bitches. (Okay, okay...I know it was lame, but it's all we had. When you're exhausted grumpy and bitter, you take what you can get.)

I've been to Vegas four times now and all four times I have found myself wondering what in the hell all of the fuss is about. Overall, I've found the service to be rather crappy, the food WAY overpriced and sub-par, the town itself rather stinky and dirty, the public smoking disturbing and nauseating (I had to eat my $20 scrambled eggs while inhaling second hand smoke thanks to the asshole sitting at the next table) and the overwhelming disregard for manners and complete loss of self control, quite off-putting.

I'll take a beach on St. Thomas over Vegas any day of the week. Give me a bikini, a few glasses of Rum Punch and some Calypso music and you've got yourself a party. And what happens there, well...I promise I won't tell.

Coki Beach on St. Thomas. Ahhhh....Paradise.


Lee Ryan said...

Outstanding post!! (that comment is free by the way :-) )

Another consolation; for all of that you got an excellent story.

I'd never heard of Holly Madison, but now that I have; I wish I'd been there too.

Just make sure you canceled the reservation for the following week and next time pack a defibrillator; or not - depending on your intentions.

Jennie................ said...

did you see Scotts grave as well? Its next to Dads.

Tessa said...

Oh my god - never in a million, trillion years to I want to go to Vegas. I owe you big time, Amy, for the warning!

I have to say, though, that your post made me shriek with much so that I very nearly feel right off my chair.

Yeah, St Thomas any day - even though the cruise liners are bigger than the island in its entirety and the people who flood off them are ...well...quite big too. (We lived there for 7 years, see.)

Kathy G said...

Sorry you had such a cruddy time in Vegas. I was there last year with DH, and had a good time. But I have low standards.

You're right...everything is overpriced, but I didn't drink alcohol (water or iced tea with meals, and I kept filling the water bottle in my purse for the rest of the time). We waddled out of one all-you-can-eat buffet that sufficed for two meals, and bought some snacks and fruit at a Walgreens on the strip that were only moderately overpriced so we didn't have to buck up for a lunch.

We saw the inside of almost every casino, but only for the architecture (not the gambling), and rode the monorail a lot. We also had fun laughing at all the strange people we saw while we standing in line to buy some half-priced show tickets.

SJT said...

Love this story! I especially like the "blackberry thievery". Although, I probably would have knocked on their door LOUDLY as early as I could have and then given them the phone with my best "chipper morning" voice. Or thrown it against their door. Either way....make them suffer. Is that mean?

Bee and Rose said...

ROTFLMAO!!!! You are hilarious! I have made the decision that I will never go back to Vegas because I cannot pay $12.95 per pound for M&M' way, no how!

Love the Blackberry theft part of the story!!! What a fabulous and funny post! Thanks for the giggles!!!

Amy said...

Lee: YAY!! Something free! Yes, you would have loved to have seen Holly, I'm sure, and yes, I cancelled the reservation. (Travelocity kept $25 of it. Of course!)

Jennie: Yes. We did visit Scott's burial site. All was well and his marker in perfect condition. The cemetery was green & beautiful and shady. Very peaceful.

Tessa: I can't believe you've lived in St. Thomas!! Oh, how jealous I am! Yes, I remember that when I went, there was an abundant amount of flesh (and not the very pretty kind) hanging out on the beaches. (Lots of it was very hairy as well!)

Oh...and lots of people really seem to enjoy Vegas. It's just not my ($10) cup of tea.

Kathy: You should write a travel guide about how to do Vegas on the cheap!!

Oh...I forgot to tell you...I have a phobia of buffet style eating. Gives me the heebie jeebies.

We don't gamble either and the buildings are cool, but I have to stay out of the casinos as much as possible because of the thick clouds of smoke. My eyes water and I get super congested. (Okay. I can tell. I REALLY don't belong in Vegas!)

SJT: IS mean. Give me a high five, Baby!!!!

Dawn:I decided to give the other dispenser to the son of the friend who watched my bird for me while I was away. I bought three pounds of M&Ms for him yesterday and they cost $6.00.


Andrea said...

I was in Vegas once and wasn't impressed. You are so funny with the bridesmaid's Blackberry - that is definitely something I would have done! I'm with you, I'll take the beach over Vegas any day!

Amy said...

Andrea:Let's book the trip!! I can already smell the Rum Punch....

lakeviewer said...

You caught the real Vegas dirty secret. You'll remember this one and so will your readers. If people knew....

markdw said...

Hm. I've never been to dad's gravesite. I've always wanted to go though.

But I agree: Vegas sucks. I would probably have taken some very dubious pictures with the blackberry and left it for them to find.

Missy said...

Your horrible trip made for a hilarious story!! Thanks!

Amy said...

Rosaria: Yes. The slogan, "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" certainly can have multiple meanings.

Mark: We thought of several horrible things that we might do with the phone but decided that we're just not that rotten. (I did put a hex on it before turning it in though.)

Missy: I'm glad my suffering brings such happiness! (*grin*)