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Excalibur - May 1 - 5 - "Long Version"

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by JoeVegas, May 7, 2006.

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  1. JoeVegas

    JoeVegas Low-Roller

    Mar 16, 2006

    My Trip Report

    Hi all,

    I’ve broken my trip reports into 2 separate reports and posted them separately. One is the “short version†and pretty much just provides a summary of the different events. For those of you not interested in all the minutia, you may want to read that one instead. For those of you hardcore addicts who want more, then please read on.....


    Below is my trip report from my unexpected trip to Vegas from May 1 to May 5. As I had written previously, my (soon-to-be) 23 year old son told me a few weeks ago that he was going to be moving from Illinois to Vegas. His old roommate had moved there last August and since he had a place to stay, figured he’d give it a try.

    I offered to drive with him if he didn’t have anyone else and wanted some company. He said a friend of his was checking to see if he could get the time off but if not, he’d let me know. A couple of days later he called and asked if I was serious about driving with him, which I confirmed I was, and BAM....an unexpected Vegas trip was born.

    We’d be driving from Rockford to Vegas as I was able to catch an excellent one-way (return) airfare of only $89 on May 5. My son was already in the process of selling off his furniture and appliances and managed to condense his worldly possessions into one carload, plus a few boxes that will be mailed later, and still leave enough room for the two of us plus his 3 year old dog. So there was no need to haul a trailer.

    We originally had planned on leaving Sunday morning and driving straight through to Vegas. I wasn’t sure if we’d be able to do it without stopping and I figured the dog was going to be an added dynamic affecting the trip regarding how often we’d have to stop, if we did stop where we’d stay, etc.

    Now let me digress for a moment and with apologies to all of you dog lovers out there, tell you that I’m just not one of them. It’s not that I dislike them, I just don’t see the need. I’ve never owned a dog in my life and there are two main reasons people tell me that they own a dog: protection and companionship.

    Well, I’ve never had a problem with people robbing my house or felt that the companionship would outweigh the vet bills, cost of food, the dog hair left on everything imaginable, the barking in the middle of the night at nothing, etc....

    The dog is also a pitbull, which after constantly hearing horrible stories about that particular breed didn’t exactly get me excited with anticipation. But I figured the fact that the dog was coming was just something I’d have to deal with in order to spend time with my son and help him out.

    Well, as it turned out, the dog was absolutely the sweetest dog I’ve ever seen in my life and was so well behaved that she wasn’t a problem at all. I can see how people can be dog lovers since I instantly fell in love with this one. Now mind you, I’m not running out to buy a dog but if for some reason my son had to get rid of this one, I’d take her in heartbeat.


    We originally planned on leaving on Sunday morning around 7:00 a.m. from Rockford for the estimated 25 hours (driving time) trip. After looking at the route and talking with a friend, I called me son two days before and asked him if we wanted to leave the night before we wouldn’t have to drive through the mountains at night. I also figured that if we became fatigued and needed to get a hotel, we wouldn’t be looking for one that took pets at 2:00 in the morning. He said okay and we met at the Rockford airport where I was leaving my car for the return trip, promptly at 6:30 on Saturday night.

    My son pulled up with the dog sitting upright in the front seat in the most awful looking vehicle I’d seen in some time. The car is a 1997 Mercury sable and had been in an accident a few months after my son bought it. Because he didn’t have collision insurance and the accident was his fault, the body of the car was never fixed.

    I know Hurricane Mikey has written about the legendary ghetto sled but on appearance, this car would appear to be a serious contender for the title. I’m willing to bet that should his legendary ride ever be retired my son’s car will be the early odds on favorite to win the title. Even getting in the vehicle you can see where the airbags once resided and the dashboard is lit up like a Christmas tree from all the sensors that no longer operate properly. The window on the passenger’s side doesn’t open nor does it close properly so you get to hear the wind rushing by you the entire trip you’re seated in the car.

    We left Rockford and began our journey. Although the vehicle looked like it wasn’t going to make it to Iowa, it made it all the way without incident. It rained until we got to Omaha, but the weather was pretty much clear thereafter. I wasn’t certain whether we’d be able to drive straight through but with 2 drivers exchanging responsibilities and taking catnaps in between, we pulled into the Excalibur at 7:05 p.m. on Sunday night. So with the time change and pitstops for gas and potty breaks, we made it in 26.5 hours. It's amazing what you can accomplish with cigarettes
    and a can of Red Bull every couple hundred miles.

    Just as an aside, I’d never driven though the mountains before as my previous journey to and from Vegas were both through the southern route of Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona. Not only was it easier to drive through the mountains of Colorado during the day, I’m glad we didn’t miss the beauty of them by doing so at night as our original plan would have done.

    Because I wasn’t sure of how long the journey was going to take us, I had originally booked a room at the El Cortez for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night for $88 for the 3 nights (book 2, get 1 night free) through Expedia. When I got up Saturday morning before the trip, I had gotten an e-mail from Exalibur offering me $31.00 per night for the same three nights. Since my preference is to stay on the strip, I paid the $25.00 cancellation fee to Expedia and booked the Excalibur.

    When we were about 2 hours outside of Vegas, I called the Excalibur to see if they had rooms available for Sunday and Monday night. Although I could have stayed with my son and his roommate, the place is only a one bedroom apartment and I’d prefer to have a place of my own anyway. I was told by the hotel registration operator that it wouldn’t be a problem to extend my stay for the 2 nights and they even gave me the same rates offered in the e-mail for those 2 nights. ($51.00 for Sunday night and $31.00 for Monday).

    My son’s roommate got a ride and met us at the Exalibur so he could direct my son to his new apartment. We said our goodbyes and agreed to meet up in a couple of days and have dinner.

    I was told by the reservations desk that the Excalibur offers a computerized check-in procedure that I would not have to wait in line at the front desk and could call another number if I was interested. I called the 800 number she gave me (800 753-9773) and told them I’d be arriving in a couple of hours. I was asked a few questions about preferences (smoking or non-smoking? king or two queens? 13th floor okay?) and told I was all set. Upon arrival at the hotel I went to one of several kiosks near the registration desk, stuck in the credit card I had reserved the room and got my room location and keys all in less than 3 minutes.

    I went straight to my room after arrival, barely able to think as I was exhausted. The room was very warm and as luck would have it, the air conditioner wouldn’t turn on. I called the hotel operator, was connected to housekeeping who told me she would notify maintenance. I asked her if she knew how long it would be and she said she didn’t have any idea but would call them immediately.

    I decided that as much as I didn’t want to trudge back down to the lobby to get a new room, I sure didn’t want to wait for someone to show up to fix it. Even though I was exhausted, I thought the room was too uncomfortable to sleep. So I called the front desk and explained that I wasn’t sure what to do (get a new room or wait) since I wasn’t told how long it would take. She said she’d connect me directly to the maintenance department and the guy who answered said he’d just received the call and was dispatching someone immediately.

    Probably about 2 minutes later I got a phone call back from the same guy who said the repairman was outside my door. Right on cue as he completed the sentence a knock came and the repairman was there. The repairman removed the cover and managed to get the unit running although the repair resulted in the fan running continuously and the compressor kicking on and off as opposed to the unit turning on and off depending on the temperature. The inside of the unit was completely disgusting with years worth of dust built up but I was too tired to really care. Besides, if I hadn’t had a problem with the unit in the first place I’d never known how disgusting it looked anyway.

    The repairman told me that the unit is one original to the hotel and is therefore 15 or 16 years old and he really couldn’t do anything about how loud the unit was when it ran. At that point I didn’t really care about the noise as long it was going to get some cooling in the room which it did very capably the entire trip. I’d leave it cranked on high during the day and then when I’d come back to sleep, turn it off and the room stayed cool enough until I was ready to get up.

    My unpacking consisted of dumping my duffle bag out on the extra queen bed, brushing my teeth before laying down to sleep. Sure enough, I couldn't sleep. I realized I probably should have passed on the last can of Red Bull in Utah but it was too late now to do anything about it. After 30 minutes I got up and decided to try my luck on some slots since it was much less taxing on the brain than video poker or one of the table games. I couldn’t hit a darn thing and so about 2 hours later, I ended up going back to the room exhausted and a bit poorer.

    I guess this would be the appropriate place to interject with my gambling habits. I’m pretty much your typical lower roller. When I lived in Vegas 25 years ago, I stuck to mostly blackjack and became pretty good with basic strategy in a one or two deck game. As the town expanded and the minimum’s went up for these games, my income did not increase as rapidly and I found myself playing more at the games with 4 - 6 deck shoes. Unfortunately, I found basic strategy to be less effective so I changed to .25 cent video poker where I felt I had some control in the outcome. I still will play blackjack if I can find a $5 single or double deck game if I’m in the mood. However, the last few times it seems that even if I’d be getting solid 19's and 20's, the dealer was still able to consistently beat me with 20's and 21's. So my enthusiasm for blackjack has waned.

    In the past, I’d occasionally play slot machines as well. Prior to the days of the full video slots that are now prevalent, I found that you could chase your money and with some deep pockets, usually cost average down a loss or possibly even turn the loss into a win. I don’t find that to be as true today with the video slots, so I now just play what I want and never chase a loss in a slot machine.

    But I do enjoy playing the slots more now than I ever have in the past and so my games of choice are slots and video poker. I love to get into the bonus games just to see the creativity that the designers develop. The penny slots allow me to play longer for less money and although I know I’ll never get the big score, I consider $40 on a $20 buy-in just as satisfying as a $50 win on a $100 buy-in on black jack. You double your money either way but the slots are a lot more fun.


    On Monday morning I got up surprisingly early around 8:00 am, showered and walked over to the Monte Carlo for no particular reason. I ended up eating at the buffet at the Monte Carlo as there was no line for entry. I haven’t read much about the Monte Carlo buffet but I thought for $11.99 it was pretty decent. They had an omelette station where you could pick out your own ingredients and the cook would make it up right in front of you. The rest of the buffet was pretty much your standard buffet offerings, fruit, cereal, eggs, french toast, sausage, bacon, bagels etc. Where I found the buffet lacking was in the dessert selection as it was pretty limited. Service was good and my server stopped by frequently with a coffee refill.

    I decided to hang around and get some points on the Club One players card and started playing the penny slots. My favorite game is one called Money Storm where I find that even though you might be losing, the machine will at least give you something along the way. (You bet 1 coin in for 20 cents and win 8. You’ve still lost 12 cents but those 8 cent “wins†you get along the way allow you to play a few extra pulls). The bonus on the Money Storm is in the form of free spins and you can get additional free spins during the bonus round as well. I also played some video poker and I held my own (up 10 dollars on one machine, down fifteen the next) on both games for several hours worth of play. In the long run, I’d estimate I lost $40.

    I decided to go to the CVS pharmacy next door, pick up some snacks for the room and head back to take a nap. I was cutting through NYNY on my way back to my rooms and decided I’d stop and put a few points on my player’s card. I’m going to be going back to Vegas in July when my other son turns 21 in July. We’re booked at NYNY for that stay on an e-mail offer I got in April. I considered staying at NYNY this trip but was concerned that my limited gambling budget for this unexpected trip may cause them to withdraw the preferred rate I got in July if I again took advantage of the preferred rate. Not wanting to screw-up that trip I decided against NYNY.

    I hadn’t shaved that morning and I figured I must have looked like a homeless guy carrying his groceries around. I noticed that security at NYNY took an interest in me and began watching me as one of two guards kept walking past me and I could see in the reflection them looking over my shoulder as they passed. So decided to have some fun and strategically placed my cigarettes over the balance I had in the machine so they couldn’t see it when they walked by. If I saw them watching me, I played extremely slow as if I was trying to make every last penny last. In an utter show of political incorrectness, I even began muttering to myself when they’d walk by.

    Cocktail service was good and I ordered a couple of Corona’s along the way, each time tipping the waitress a dollar. I’m sure they couldn’t quite figure me out but eventually they left me alone and stopped the intense scrutiny after 45 minutes of our little cat and mouse game.

    I got back to the room and took a short nap and then went and sat at the pool for about an hour until it closed. I returned to my ritual of penny slot machine play at the Excalibur and a few hours later and several Corona’s as well, decided to go outside and return to NYNY.

    There was huge rally as something like 10,000 people marched down Las Vegas Blvd protesting the immigration policy in DC. As I imagine was discussed elsewhere on this board, they shut down traffic along the Strip and the march ended in front of the Statue of Liberty at the NYNY casino.

    I happened to be out at that time and was watching the rally. As they were yelling their protest chants, encouraged and supported by the several Corona beers I had consumed earlier, I wondered what would happen if I began to sing America the Beautiful. I even turned to an older couple who were standing next to me and asked them if they wanted to join me. They made a hasty retreat and the horrified look on their face before they left convinced me that it wasn’t as brilliant of an idea as I had originally thought. I learned that Coronas and protest rallys don't mix and needless to say, I didn't sing. Deciding that it was probably best to go to the room at that point, I turned around and went to bed.

    One of the cool things (at least to a Vegas geek like me) is that the hotel room has the Convention and Visitor's television station on it. The shows are all about the history of Vegas, Area 51 which is known for UFO sightings and the building of the Hoover Dam. It runs 24 hours a day so it's on the
    entire time I'm in the room except for when I'm sleeping.

    Pretty interesting stuff although I am beginning to feel a bit like Dustin Hoffman in Rainman. (Did you know that the Hoover Dam was completed 2 years ahead of schedule and under budget?). Oh well, I just can't turn it off.


    Still weary from the trip, I ended up sleeping in and finally got up around 11:00 a.m. My
    son called around 1:00 p.m. and came and picked me up and we traveled to the Gold Coast, Palms and Rio. We were both hungry and were going to simply grab a couple of .75 hot dogs at the sports book there but they were out. Although the lady working there assured us it would be only a few minutes, when she explained she knew this because she’d already been waiting 45 minutes, we decided to pass and ended up at the buffet instead. Another decent buffet and inexpensive (I think it was $7.45 each) with a much better dessert selection than the Monte Carlo I had visited yesterday. I’d call the service marginal as we had to flag down the server for refills on our pops.

    After lunch we decided to gamble a little and found our way to the penny machines which are plentiful at the Gold Coast. We bounced around trying our luck in different machines. One of my favorite memories of the trip occurred while we were playing a couple of machines and my son had it a bonus on it. I looked at his face while the bonus was doing it’s thing and saw him sitting there just grinning away like a kid watching a Saturday morning cartoon. The parent in me just swelled seeing the joy on his face.

    My son ended up around $40 ahead and I was down about $20 by the time we decided to go visit the Palms. I had accrued some points on my card from my last trip when I stayed at the Gold Coast and decided to get the cash back on them ($35) since I hadn’t really received any offers of note from the property.

    The Palms also had an ample supply of penny machines but neither one of us could get many bonus rounds to sustain us for long so we decided to move on to the Rio. We walked over there, and toured the casino, saw the Bevertainers do their thing and played a couple of machines. I’ve never done well at the Rio (or any Harrah’s property for that matter) so I wasn’t at all disappointed that he wanted to get going and get a new cell phone.

    He dropped me off around 6:30 and I spent the next 3 hours playing penny slots at the Excalibur. I found a 100 play penny video poker machine and have found them to be pretty good paybacks. You usually always get something back on your initial bet so you can sustain for a long time. If you’re lucky enough to be dealt 3 of a kind, you’re virtually assured of getting one or two 4 of a kinds. I like to vary my bets on these generally playing 1 or 2 coins with the occasional 5 coin bet ($5 total).

    While at the Excalibur, I resumed my support of the immigration movement (as well as the Free Trade Agreement) by consuming several more Coronas. I know that the Excalibur is not highly regarded by a number of people and I agree that the ambiance may leave something to be desired. But I personally find their drink service to be one of the best on the strip. Whether they are busy or slow I never have to wait long for a drink regardless of whether I’m playing table games, video poker or penny slots.

    I went up to the room around 9:30, turned on the Tourism channel and went to sleep.


    I got a bus pass and took "The Deuce" to downtown, making a couple of stops along the way. For those unfamiliar, the Deuce is/are the double decker buses that are operated by the metroplitan transit authority. Unlike the buses I think of when I think of London, these are not open on top. The all day bus pass is only 5.00 per day and considering a taxi ride is something like 3.00 for the first eighth of a mile, it's a bargain.

    As has been noted by other writers, the only drawback is they stop every few blocks. So between loading and unloading, the trip to downtown from the far south end of the Strip takes a long time. So if you're in a hurry, you'd best find alternate transportation. If you’re not in any particular hurry, the buses are a nice way to see the strip and take a break from walking.

    I stopped at the Wynn casino as it wasn't open last time I was here. It was nice, but it wasn't my kind of place. I suppose it's just too elegant for my taste as I'm more of the burger and beer kind of guy. The place was pretty empty at 11:00 in the morning and considering I believe it cost something like 2.7 billion dollars, I figured the slot machines would be pretty tight. I confirmed my suspicion by promptly losing 20 dollars faster than any place I had played thus far.

    I walked over to Circus Circus and met up with a friend of mine who still works there. We had started working there within a few months of one another and have stayed in touch for the past 25 years. I hadn't told him I was coming so he was surprised. We ate lunch together and visited a bit longer but he had to get back to work.

    I decided to enter the free slot tournament at Circus Circus but didn’t qualify among the top 3 totals for the 2:00 p.m. wheel spin where you have a chance to win up to $500. They also draw three names from the drum of runner-up entrants (i.e. no qualifying) who also get a chance to spin the wheel. Since it was about 1:30 I decided to hang around and see if perhaps my name would be drawn but alas, it was not to be. A guy whose name was drawn from the drum did manage to hit the $500 so that was pretty exciting. I did manage to leave Circus about $20 ahead.

    I got the Deuce to complete my journey to downtown and along the way the bus driver would tell a bit of the history of the different properties and the construction that was currently taking place in addition to the upcoming stops. I found him to be entertaining. As we approached Gass Avenue he advised everybody to take a deep breath and then announced “We’ve just passed Gassâ€, which appealed to my sophomoric humor.

    I wandered around in and out of the downtown casinos pretty much holding my own in terms of gambling. I love trips where you can do that and it's not just constantly lose, lose, lose. The casinos always eventually succeed in getting my money but over the course of several hours, it's not so painful.

    I walked over to Main Street Station and sat at the bar in the Triple 7 brewery and had a basket of chicken wings and a couple of their pale ale beers. I’m not sure if it was the residual liquor in my system from the day before or if their home brew is that much more potent, but I did feel a bit of a buzz from those 2 beers. Stopped by at the bar and played 9/6 JOB poker and managed to hit a 4 of a kind for an extra scratch ticket worth $2. The machine went cold and I decided to leave.

    On the way out, I found a $5 singled deck blackjack table so I decided to play a little bit. They only pay 6 to 5 on the blackjack but since it was the first single deck $5 table I’d seen, I didn’t really care. The dealers where friendly and there were only a couple of other people playing the entire time I sat there.

    I held my own and was up about 20 dollars when a woman with a rotten disposition came and sat down to my right and just changed the whole atmosphere. She was slamming her chips down with each bet, would sneer at the rest of us who would congratulate one another on a good hit or a dealer bust and was just a generally unpleasant person. I also started getting the old 14, 15 and 16's to the dealer’s 8, 9 an 10's showing so after losing 5 hands in a row, I decided that was enough and left the table.

    I walked over to Binion’s and found a $5 pai gow poker table. I’d never played the game live before although I had played online at one of the free sites. I do see the attraction in the game as I was at a very social table and that made it fun. The fact that it’s a slow game doesn’t bother my lower roller ways either.

    My son called me as he had gotten a new (local) cell phone and wanted to give me the number. I asked him what he and his roommate were going to do that evening and he said they were going to go downtown. COOL!!! I told him to call me when they got down there and we'd hook up if I was still there.

    We did connect up and the three of us resumed what was now beginning to seem like a ritual of wandering in and out of the casinos and playing some penny slots. We watched the light show, drank a few beers and just had a good time. They were kind enough to gave me a ride back to the Excalibur so I didn’t have to face the walk to the depot to catch the bus and the long ride home. I played some more 100 play video poker, holding my own in the process, and then headed to bed.


    My last day was pretty much the same as before. Some walking from casino to casino and fairly steady up and down in terms of wins and losses.

    I stopped by the One Club players club booth at the Excalibur as I had knew I had some comp dollars on my card before I left and whatever I had gained during this trip that I wanted to be sure to use before they convert to the MGM-Mirage club later. Turns out that I had $115 to apply to my room.

    I asked the representative if I needed to present the voucher at check-out or if they would do it automatically and she said I’d have to do it at check-out, or I could go there now and apply it and then just have the balance on my room. Since I was leaving at 4:00 in the morning to catch my 6:00 a.m. flight, I decided to do it right then and then use the check-out from the room.

    I went to the check-out and the young lady there said she’d be right back and went to VIP services which is located right next to the registration desk. When she returned, she said she didn't know how to do the transaction and had to check with someone. She told me I’d be receiving a credit of $29.00 to my credit card and that my entire trip was paid in full. So basically, it came to $21.00 for the 5 nights. I haven’t quite figure out how my initial deposit of $51.00, less the $29 credit for a total of $21, plus the $115 in comp dollars totals $175 plus tax....but I’m not complaining.

    I visited the Luxor and then headed back to NYNY. I didn’t see any security guards watching me this time so I’m convinced that it was the shopping bags that made me of interest to them.

    I was playeing at the Monte Carlo when an usual event occurred. I had cashed out of one machine for $14.64 and went to insert the voucher in another machine. The second machine accepted the voucher but then lit up the “call attendant†sign. While waiting for the attendant, I moved to the next machine and started playing that machine.

    When the attendant finally showed up, he found the voucher stuck in the acceptor and gave it back to me. There were no credits showing on the machine and since I was already playing a machine, I decided not to move. I tried to insert it into the machine I was playing but it kept rejecting the voucher. I asked the attendant what was wrong and he said he didn’t know. He tried it in a couple of other machines but said he didn’t know what the problem was but they’d be able to pay me at the cashier. Okay, no big deal, I stuck the voucher in my pocket and figured I’d take care of it later.

    I didn’t play too much longer and then went to the cage to cash in both vouchers I now had. The cashier paid me for the voucher from the second machine, but said the voucher for $14.64 was showing it had already been paid and directed me to the slot cashier.

    I took the voucher to that cashier and she said she was getting the same message and called a floorman over. I explained to him what had happened, showed him the machine I originally received the voucher and the machine in which the voucher had jammed. I also described the appearance of the attendant that had assisted me in the first place.

    He called for a casino manager and we walked back to the slot cashier and he explained what had happened to her. She tried to get the voucher accepted in the system but then left with the floorman apparently to inspect the machines herself saying she’d be right back.. I was beginning to feel a bit like a criminal with the way I was being treated since the manager never spoke to me. Still, I figured she had her procedures to follow and I’d just be patient.

    While I was waiting I did decide though, that if they were going to refuse to pay me I would ask for them to contact the gaming board and I’d let them decide. In my opinion all of what I had said would be easily verifiable by talking with the original attendant as well as looking at the payout record of the machines in question. I asked the slot cashier if this happens often and she told me it doesn’t happen often, but it does happen.

    A few minutes later, the floorman returned with a young lady who paid me $15.00 in cash and thanked me for my patience. So everything worked out in the end and it only took about 15 minutes to resolve. Still, I tell this story so others may be advised that the TI/TO systems are not infallible.

    I took my son and his roommate to the Rainforest Café at the MGM. His roommate had gotten tickets for the 10:30 show to KA for the two of them so we met around 8:00 p.m. for dinner. I’ve never been to the Rainforest before having heard most people say it’s very expensive for what you get. I’d agree that the menu was similar to an overpriced TGIF but I didn’t think it was outrageous. The total bill for the 3 of us was less than $50 although none of us had any alcoholic beverages either.

    My son offered to take me to the airport so we agreed to meet after KA where we would take his roommate home and the two of us would go out for the last few hours. They live not too far from Sunset Station and although I did look for Hurricane Mikey I didn’t see him. I wasn’t sure if I would introduce myself to him or not since he “doesn’t know me from Adam†and thought it could be kind of awkward if not downright creepy to say “Hi, I read your blog all the timeâ€. Of course, I suppose it’s just as creepy for him to now know that people may be looking at him knowing more about him than he realizes.

    We spent the last couple of hours as we had the rest of the week, playing penny slots, having a few laughs, and just hanging out together. It was time for me to get to the airport and although we did have to circle the parking lot twice until we managed to get to the right exit for departures, we made it.

    The flight was on time and uneventful and I slept most of the way home.


    It was kind of interesting as he took me to the airport and talked. I got the sense that it was finally hitting him that he is really going to be on his own and far away from family.

    This last week has been sort of a vacation for him with me nearby. I told him not to be afraid to call me if he's feeling a little homesick. He said he didn't think that would happen and I'm not sure if it really happened or if it was just my imagination, but I swear I heard some trepidation in his voice as he said this. I told him I’m confident that he’ll have some great experiences and to remember that the choices he makes will shape his future. Although I felt bad for his seeming insecurity, I felt like a Dad to him to be able to be there to support, assist and encourage him in this journey.

    I'm glad I'm on my way home but also glad I'll be back in a few months to see him when my other son turns 21.

    Thanks for enduring my story. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

  2. aggie182

    aggie182 Off Key and Out of Tune

    Mar 20, 2005
    Missouri City, TX
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Great TR. Sounds like you will have a good excuse to go to Vegas a bunch since you have a son out there.
  3. DonD

    DonD Super Moderator

    Nov 5, 2004
    So Cal 91748
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Very good trip report. Thanks for taking the time to write it.
  4. doctor_al

    doctor_al VIP Whale

    Nov 25, 2002
    Twin Cities
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Neat story. Loved the "homeless guy at NYNY" part.
  5. RWB3777

    RWB3777 Tourist

    Mar 24, 2006
    I really enjoyed your report....sounds like a few of my trips.....we must be gambling twins!!!! I also love the penny slots....can't make or lose a bunch but the entertainment is very good.....and after all isn't that what we go for?
    Hope my trip in Sept is just as good.....(always is anyhow)

    Jo (little vegas Jo ):wiggle:
  6. MikeE

    MikeE The Shah's Slightly Hairy Cousin

    Nov 5, 2003
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Loved the TR. Reminded me of the trips I've taken with my dad.

    Surprising a friend you've known for over 25 years?! That's gotta' be something!
  7. vegasbound

    vegasbound Moderator

    Mar 3, 2002
    Las Vegas
    Nicely done! 3 years ago, Hubby and I made that drive, except we came from the So.burbs of Chicago and we each drove. Planned to make the drive in 2 days, but got stuck in Nebraska, a tornado ripped thru leaving grapefruit-sized hail. Then we stopped again, in Grand Junction, Co., because the drive thru the Rockies wiped us out. The drive thru UT was the best - absolutely gorgeous. Great of you to help your son out! Hope he's settled in nicely.

    Also, I had similar trouble at GVR with TITO, but it took them well over 30 minutes to get it straightened out. The system is certainly not flawless.
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