Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Vegas, baby!

You have every right to pillory me for the ever-lengthening gaps between blog posts but I'll be honest with you - I write when I feel I have something worth writing about. Or just when I'm in the mood. And that's not all that often. But today it's time. Why? Because I've just returned from my first ever trip to Las Vegas.

And we loved every flippin' moment of it. I had people telling me that my planned eight days would be far too long ("Four days is all you'll be able to handle," said one person. "We got bored after three," said another.) And to them I say "thpffffft."

We both loved it. In spite of a mini-April-heatwave (up to 35 degrees C) it was tolerable and for the first three days we just walked and walked and walked. And looked at the lights, and watched people playing games, and checked out each and every hotel on the strip, and and and.

In a nutshell, we saw five shows, explored countless casinos and hotels, went window-shopping in laughably expensive places (seriously - $28,900 for a watch? No jewels or precious metals, just a nice watch), drove to Hoover Dam, drove to the Grand Canyon and took a helicopter ride, hit the pawn shop from History Channel's 'Pawn Stars',

and even went shopping. Oh - and even found the Zombie Apocalypse Store, for all your Armageddon needs.

The magic shops (I found four of them) were by turns slick-but-dull, slick-and-duller, dire-and-empty, and ok-but-uninspired-and-mundane. Such a disappointment. Someone seriously needs to put together a real (ie not for tourists) well-stocked magic shop with some rockin' decor - plush carpet, secret doorways, wood cabinetry, red velvet chairs and a wide range of real working magic stuff. Not just kits aimed at visitors.

So...shows. Saw Penn and Teller. Absolute masters of their craft. Showmen. Polished, original, funny, engaging and eminently watchable. (Me with Teller after the show...)

Then Mac King. Not as famous among laypeople as he deserves. Warm, funny, and again very watchable.

And then there were two other magic acts I'm not even going to mention by name because I didn't enjoy either one. Neither was satisfying, admirable, entertaining or original. Disappointment.

So here I am, back in Canada, writing this in the rain. But it's good to be back.