Images from Las Vegas (and Beyond): Part Four

I didn’t know exactly what to title this entry since The Grand Canyon isn’t in Las Vegas however it was part of our Las Vegas trip. I have never seen The Grand Canyon before and what I hear from those who have is that no photo, no matter how well done, simply cannot capture the size and depth of the canyon. I have to say that even though I am fairly pleased with my shots they pale in comparison to what we saw in person.

I will have fond memories of seeing the canyon for the first time however not so much for the incredibly long bus ride it took us to get there. That’s not a knock against the Grand Canyon Tour Company in any way. The bus was clean, our tour guide was extremely pleasant and the lunch buffet certainly hit the spot. There just comes a point where I can no longer sit in one spot anymore and by the time we were headed back to our hotel (the Luxor) I was pretty much ready to never see a bus again. Combine that feeling with the exhaustion felt by making sure we were at our pick up point at 6:15 am at the Excalibur Rotunda next door. Generally, that isn’t obscenely early in my day to day life however when you are vacationing in a “24 hour” town getting to bed at a reasonably early time the night prior is not an easy task. Also, in Vegas, the term “next door” should be used very loosely when referring to distances anywhere on the strip.  Things look far closer than they actually are. Always wear comfortable shoes.

Moving on, let’s admire the beauty of America’s biggest hole, as well as a little bit of our journey getting there.

waiting for the Grand Canyon Tour Bus 2

Mule Ride

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Grand Canyon

Girl with the Flubber Tattoo

Hoover Dam

Part Three   Part Five Coming Soon

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Images from Las Vegas: Part One

So last week the hubby and I took a 5 night trip to Las Vegas for the very first time. When we mentioned this to friends and colleagues we were surprised to find that such a large amount of them had not only been there but have gone multiple times. We wondered what it was about Vegas that made people repeatedly come back. Why would you re-visit the same place when there are so many vacation options across the globe? What was so intriguing that created the need to return to the city of neon lights? I’ll expand on that thought over the course of the next image heavy posts which will each chronicle a day from our trip.

This first batch covers our flight which is the part of the trip I dreaded most because I am not nor have I ever been a calm flyer. Remember the Twilight Zone (movie or episode) where the guy (William Shatner or John Lithgow) sees a monster on the wing and freaks out? Well, that’s pretty much me in a nutshell. If the nutshell was flying at 35,000 feet while being pressurized resulting in a head imploding like sensation for several hours. Simply put, flying has always felt too unnatural and uncomfortable to be so routinely done by so many people. I am always frustrated by the calmness and ease of the other passengers while I panic at the slightest sound or tiniest flicker of light.

Usually our conversations go something like this:

Me: “WHAT WAS THAT?!?!”

Hubby: “That’s the landing gear. We need that to live.”

Me: “Shut Up.”

As you might have guessed based on the sole fact that you are reading this, we landed safely. In my few moments of bravery I did manage to snap a few pictures out the window. This was actually rather helpful, for a few moments anyway, in letting myself out of the moment and existing behind the lens. That and well, Flubbers make any situation better.

Once we landed we took a shuttle bus for $6 each to our hotel, which was the Luxor, and checked in. We originally booked the Deluxe Pyramid Room, though after doing some research it was commonly recommended that a room in the Tower section was the way to go due to the recent renovations. So we politely asked if any complimentary upgrades were available and to our pleasure an upgrade to the tower was given to us at no extra charge. I believe that at most hotels  if a slight upgrade is available that usually one will be given.

Being the party animals that we are, we gobbled down some food and  promptly took a nap. Then we woke up around  7:00pm as the sun was just starting to dim and within the next hour Vegas began to light up. So we pulled ourselves together and ventured out into the neon landscape.

From the plane

From the plane

McCarran Airport

View from room at Luxor

New York New York Skyline
Siren in the Sea

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Skull Rock
Excalibur

Part Two