My wife nudged me awake on the plane. My 4 a.m. alarm came about as early as my 1 a.m. bedtime had come late. â€œLook at that,â€ she told me as she pointed out her window towards the earth below. The land was spotted with shadows cast by dancing clouds in the sky, and the ground was deep and cavernous painted bright reds, oranges and yellows. It was the Grand Canyon we were flying over, and I knew at the moment it was going to be a great trip. Shortly thereafter, the Captain informed us we were making our decent into Sin City, and a sudden nervousness began to overtake me. I am not a lucky guy. I donâ€™t suffer bad luck so to speak, but things just seem to not go my way, so a trip to Vegas seemed to be a bit off for me. When the city came into view however, my excitement started to take over at the prospects of the possible fun we could have. Arriving at the airport the first sound we hear is the bings, beeps, and boops of slot machines. To me this has to be the sound of greed at its finest. The allure of winning is in the air, and coincidentally it begins at the airport. We were staying at the MGM Grand so we check in directly at the airport. Being 11 in the morning, we were told our rooms werenâ€™t ready, but we could call after a while to see if theyâ€™d be ready early. We also took part in the shuttle service that would take us to the hotel and back when we were all set to leave. Our bags were supposed to be in our room when we got there; sounded reasonable enough, so that worry was off our hands. When we arrived at the MGM the first thing we wanted to do was sign up for our Players Club card. Getting in line we noticed a sign about a big giveaway, for Labor Day, when you signed up for the card. When we got to the desk, the lady had all sorts of trouble getting our cards made, and when she finally did we asked her about the giveaway, and the only thing she said to us was â€œI donâ€™t know what thatâ€™s about. NEXT!â€ A little peeved we walked away from the desk. We knew we had no real chance of winning the giveaway, but at least it would have been nice to have had a chance. We would later learn she also didnâ€™t give us our 20 dollar free play that was in our promotion, and messed up both of our emails for the account. After signing up, we decided to call to see if our room was ready. The couple we were traveling with called first. Their room was ready! Excited about getting to our room for maybe a quick nap, I called the desk, and of course our room was NOT ready, even though it was just two doors down from the other coupleâ€™s. Oh well, we decided to go to their room for a little bit, give room service about 30 minutes and try again. Three calls, and an hour and a half later our room still wasnâ€™t ready. So instead of a nap, the four of us figured weâ€™d go down and get some lunch with our free buffet that was given to us in our promotion. We were told all we had to do, was charge the All-day buffet to our room, and it would be credited to us. Sounded easy enough, when we got to the cashier counter, we told the gentleman about the promotion, he told us he hadnâ€™t heard about it and then charged us the one time buffet. We had to argue with him for a bit, he called the desk to confirm the promotion and our stay and after about 10 minutes we got everything cleared up, but not without scowls from the people behind us. We ate at the buffet most of the trip, and let me just say, as a guy whoâ€™s only regular choices for buffetâ€™s are Golden Corral and the Chinese version, the one at the MGM was pleasantly delicious. I would gladly eat there, even if it wasnâ€™t part of our promotion. After eating I called the desk again, and finally our room was ready. We took the elevator up to the 13 floor, opened our door to see our room; it was very nice with a pretty good view of the Monte Carlo and NYNY. The bed was extremely comfortable, which may have had to do with how tired we were, but we decided to get ready for a trip down the strip instead of the nap. When we opened our closet doors to where our luggage was SUPPOSED to be, sure enough, there was nothing there. We called the front desk which had a hard time locating our two suitcases, and when they did, it still took them nearly 45 minutes to bring them to our room. Our trip was off to a rocky start. I called management to complain, not for any reason, just to let them know that things were not going very well for us and it seemed to be mostly with the Hotel. The manager was nice enough to take the charges for the shuttle off, but informed us that, actually bringing the luggage up to our room wasnâ€™t really part of the 30 dollar charge, and that it was only a complimentary service. I also told him about the lady at the Players Club, but he wasnâ€™t able to do anything about that because that was the Casino and not the hotel. Nothing was ever really resolved with that lady, and I informed them so in the survey I took when I got home. That night we decided to walk the strip, enter a few casinos and see what the city was all about. We entered a few here and there, but decided to stop and watch the water show at the Bellagio, and then take in a few drinks playing slots. Of course after a couple of beers I decide to play some blackjack at a 10 dollar table. I win a few, I lose a few and thenâ€¦I lose a lot. I decide to call it a night and wait for better things the next day. The next day, I wake up early (around 7), and my wife and I head down to get some breakfast. The same cashier who gave us trouble the day before is there again, but this time, everything works fine, but he doesnâ€™t say too much to us. Again, the breakfast buffet was great, so it seemed a good start to the day. The girls decided they wanted to go to the pool, us guys decided to make some sports bets and watch some college football. I took Cincy to beat Rutgers, and Miami to upset Florida St. We placed our bets and had about an hour to kill before the games came on, so we roamed around the MGM casino looking for some games. I came across a 5 dollar 3 card poker table where no one was sitting. I told my buddy to have a seat and letâ€™s play. I had never played it before, so the dealer explained it to us and we took part. After about an hour I was up 50 bucks or so, my buddy had lost his 40, so we called it quits. We watched to Cincy vs. Rutgers game at the sports book and enjoyed it greatly, especially since the Bearcats were laying it to the Scarlet Knights. Near half-time, the girls met us and we decided to play a few more games. I wanted to try some more 3 card poker (my new favorite game). So I sat down at a 10 dollar table this time, and played with about 100 dollars. I was losing badly to begin, got down to my last 30 bucks and hit a flush. Woo Hoo! Back in the game! I played a couple more games, when I got dealt the highlight of my trip. I looked at my hand and the first thing I though was, â€Sweet another flushâ€ and then I did a double take. I had Queen, King, and Ace of clubs, not only a straight flush, but a royal straight flush, granted thereâ€™s no difference in most 3 card pokers, but it was still pretty cool. Naturally I began yelling with excitement. I won the hand too of course, and the payout was 40 to 1. I still really donâ€™t know how much exactly I won, but I colored out after that and was handed a 500 dollar chip and a few 25 dollars. Now I know, some of you are probably laughing because Iâ€™m excited about a 500 dollar win, but when you only bring a thousand dollars to begin with, 500 dollars is great. Afterwards we decided to take it easy for a while, and take a nap. That night we were scheduled to see â€œLoveâ€ and it was amazing. The costumes, the music the stunts were all spectacular. I highly recommend this show to anyone thinking about seeing it. The rest of the night, while playing a few dollars in slots and drinking my free drinks, I was constantly singing Beatleâ€™s song. Also, Miami beat Florida St., for my second sports bet win of the day. It was a good day. Again, the next day we woke up early for breakfast. My wife and I decided to stop to play Blackjack Switch. This is also one of my new favorite games. We both walked away about 50 dollars to the good. Afterwards, my wife and I went to hang at the pool for a while, and the other couple went to the Price is Right live. Let me tell you, of all the things I did, I enjoyed being at the pool the most. It was just so relaxing, and pleasant. To me, it beat sitting at any beach any day. After the pool my wife and I decided to go the Freemont St., since everyone I talked to recommended us going there. I was a bit underwhelmed to tell you the truth. There werenâ€™t too many people there and the casinos seemed a bit rundown. I lost about 50 bucks, playing some roulette and blackjack, so we decided to head back to the MGM. We met the other couple at the Rainforest CafÃ© for dinner and then decided to go out looking for some 5 dollar tables. We were successful at the Monte Carlo. We sat down again at 3 card poker. After a few hands and two straights in a row, I was up close to 150 dollars. I called it quits and our group went to an empty craps table. I ended up winning close to another 100 dollars at that table and we called it a night. The next day we left, we were in the air for about 2 hours when I noticed some dark clouds very far away, that was an obvious thunderstorm. It wasnâ€™t affecting our flight and the lightning was spectacular; to me it seemed like a goodbye fireworks display and was a perfect end to our trip. Canâ€™t wait to go back.