Ok this is my first TR......We stayed Downtown at Fitzgerald's for 4 nights from March 6-9 for about $90. 2 years ago this same trip would have been about $250 so we were happy with the price seeing as we are what you would call Low-Rollers. Between the two of us we usually bring around $800-$1000 for gambling on a weekend. Anyways on to the TR... Thursday..... 6 P.M. Wife finally gets home from work and gets all packed up and out the door we go. Grandma is at the house and the kid is all set so off we go driving up I-15 from So Cal. towards Vegas. Trip takes about 3 1/2 hours and we finally arrive about 9:30. At check-in I try the $20 trick for a suite and it almost works. The guy at the counter worked his little keyboard for a good 45 seconds or so searching but finally said "sorry nothing's available". Oh well it was worth a shot. As we get to the Elevator bank there are signs up saying something to the effect of "Please be patient as we are upgrading our elevators. Wait times may be longer than usual" Oh great! "longer than usual" the Fitz is known for it's long wait times on elevators and this is going to be worse? Not only that but we have a room on the top floor! After waiting "longer than usual" we get to our room, unpack, shower, and . About Midnight we finally head down to the casino and get in a couple hours of losing money. Actually I didn't do too bad I only lost about $30 after about 2 hours of playing $5-$10 BJ but the wife was on a losing streak that wouldn't quit and she was down about $120. About 2 a.m. we head over to the Golden Gate and get a shrimp cocktail. On the way back to Fitz we go into Binions to check out the new poker room. It's pretty nice but on the way out I walked by the BJ tables and they are all $10? What the hell, I thought there was a recession? It's Thursday night/Friday morning at 2 a.m and all they have is $10 tables? Maybe that's why they were all empty? After that it was time for bed..... Friday.... I woke up about 9:30 and was hungry as hell for some reason. My wife was still asleep but I was hungry so much to her chagrine I woke her up anyways. She tried her best to get me to go back to sleep but I wasn't having any of it and dragged her out of bed about 10 a.m. (I love Vegas!) We went over to the El Cortez and had breakfast at the new and improved diner. She had Oatmeal (Boring!) and I went with the Bacon and Eggs with a side of Biscuits and Gravy. Why do women order oatmeal and then eat half of the food the man gets? I mean I don't get it, if ya wanted Biscuits and Gravy why didn't you freakin order it, it's only $2.95! Anyways after that we decided to save some money and go check out the new M Casino and then head over to Red Rock Canyon and do some sightseeing for the day. M Casino - Pretty impressive for a south strip property. Nice lay out of the casino and the service was extremely polite. I guess they are too new to have disgruntled employees? The only complaint I had was that it took a good 5 minutes to cash my $20 TITO at the cashiers cage because they only had 4 windows open and all 4 of them were dealing with people writing checks. We were 3rd in line and it just wasn't moving at all. Can't they set up a special window for check writers? Especially if you're gonna have TITO machines. BTW - The pool area is not open yet but looks like it will be very nice when it's complete. We fetch the car from Valet and head over to Red Rock Canyon. Red Rock Canyon - It's a 13 mile one way drive with about 13 sightseeing stops. At each stop you can get out and do hikes to see different things. By the time we got there it was already about 4 p.m. so we only went on one quick hike to see a waterfall. From the car/parking lot, the first stop was the best with some pretty cool red rock formations and people scaling rocks with rope and tackle. I think the place we stopped and hiked at was the 6th or 7th stop and it was only about a 1/4 mile hike to the waterfall which was pretty cool. When we got back to the parking lot there was a bunch of Big Horn Sheep across the road grazing so we got to watch them for a while before some retard decided to try and get close for a picture and they all ran off. After that we completed the loop and headed back to the Fitz to get ready for dinner. My lovely wife had got a $150 Gift Card from her work for Fleming's Steakhouse and after finding out that there was one Vegas we had decided to use it there instead of at the one close to our house in Rancho Cucamonga, Ca. Flemings Steakhouse - We went back to the room, showered, changed and headed out after making a 7:30 reservation. Got to Fleming's and they were packed. Again, I find myself asking, what recession? We sat at the bar had a couple of drinks, beer for me, a Margatini for my better half and we got seated about 10-15 minutes late, no problem. We both ordered the Filet and some appetizers, more drinks etc. When the bill came we both laughed as it was for $150.04! I am not lying, we went over the Gift Card by .04! Not on purpose at all, it just happened. After a 20% tip we got out of there for $30.04. The service, and food were great but the atmosphere was lacking somewhat as it was more like a very fancy Sizzler as far as seating was concerned and it was very loud with all the people talking. For the price I'd go to Ruth's Chris if we didn't have a G.C. but all in all it was very good and I certainly can't complain about the food or service. Still Friday (damn I'm making this long aren't I?) back in Downtown - We decide to check out La Bayou and Mermaids as in all of our 30 or so trips downtown we've never set foot in either of these places. First stop La Bayou with their 29 fruity chick drinks. My better half and I both head to the back and while she is in the bathroom I go to the bar and order a football of some fore-mentioned fruity chick drink thinking my wife and I will split it. The scantily clad girl behind the bar coyly asks if I'd like an extra "shot" for just a dollar more? Not wanting to seem like I'm a wuss by not only ordering a chick drink but also turning down an extra shot for only a buck I tell her yes. I pay for the drink and as I turn around take a drink SSPPIIUUUTT!!!! WHAT THE HELL!!!! This thing is toxic!!! I'm no tee-totaler and let me tell ya this thing was potent! My wife comes out of the restroom just as I sit down at a .01 machine. (Why the hell do they have .01 machines you have to play like 150 credits at a time? Does anyone really think they are getting off cheap by playing these things?) Anyways, she sits down next to me and I offer her the fruity football blue chick drink (in my mind I'm still hoping that we are going to share), she takes one sip, looks at me like I'm crazy and I realize that I'm in trouble. Here I am with a football of some blue frozen thing that I paid $15 for and my wife isn't going to have any of it. Anyways, I reconcile with my fate for the night and we quickly lose $20 each and head over to Mermaids with my blue fruity chick drink football in hand. Mermaids is crowded, loud, and dirty. I guess it could be fun under the right circumstances but we're just not feeling it and after quickly dropping $20 ea. we decide O.K. been there done that, lets get out of here. Fruity football blue chick drink in hand we head over to Binions for some poker. On the short walk over to Binions I puff out my chest real big and stare down at least 5 guys and even a couple of women that had that smirk on their face that says "Look at that wuss the the Blue fruity football chick drink." My chest puffing must have worked as none of them were dumb enough to actually call me a wuss out loud and we made it to the poker room without incident. We sit down at a 2-4 limit table and within a few minutes I'm bored out of mind (I hate limit poker) and decide to enter the 2 a.m tournament. Mind you that the fruity chick football blue thingy is about 2/3 gone by now and I'm definately feeling the effects. I picked up my fruity chick drink from hell and went over to the tournament area. Paid my $55 entry and sat down at the table hiding fruity chick drink on the floor under me. Every once in a while I'd sneak a drink while puffing my chest out as best I could while sitting down. Anyways, I think I played well in the tournament but I'm not sure, I know I got busted just before the first break but I went out in the small blind holding K-10 with a 10 and two more under cards on the flop. I ended up going all-in as someone that had been raking pots all night had raised. Turns out he had a flush draw and ended up rivering me. Such is life in Tournie poker! By now the blue fruity football chick drink from hell was gone and I was hammered . I stumbled back to the Poker room to check on the wife and then went to the BJ tables at Fitz to give them some action seeing as how they had given us a deal on the room. Sat down at a $5 table and played for about 2 hours. At one point I think I was up about $150 and if I'da been somewhat sober would have been smart enough to quit but alas the fruity blue football chick drink from hell and the 5-6 beers I had after that were too much too overcome and I finally got up and left with my original $100 about 5 a.m. or so. Went and fetched the lovely wife from Binions and we went over to Magnolia's in the Four Queens for a quick bite. As we left the 4 Queens we both looked at each other and said Oh Shit is that the sun? It was.... She walked (and I stumbled) back to our room about 6 a.m. By the way, I don't remember what happened to the souvenir football cup thingy-ma-jig and I'm glad I'll never have to see it again..... Saturday sometime around Noon – Oh god my HEAD! This sucks! Fortunately I had downed a couple Excedrin and a big glass of wonderful Vegas tap water before passing out otherwise I’d probably be dead now. So where was I? Oh yea, I crawled out of bed, downed a couple more Excedrin and swore off fruity blue football chick drinks for good! No really, I mean it this time Dammit! Never again, I swear! With that accomplished the better half and I went over to Binions Coffee shop to use our 2 fer 1 ACG coupon. (By the way, I'm not much of a coupon guy but I gotta admit that ACG thing is pretty cool. We used it quite a bit on this trip and we probably saved at least $50 plus used around $25 or so in match plays. I recommend taking a look at it next time you're headed to Vegas.) So we have breakfast and I don't even remember what we ordered but I'm sure it was good because Binions Coffee shop always is. After that we grabbed the car and went for a drive about an hour north to the Valley of Fire. This place is really neat but just like the day before we were too late to do much hiking and mostly saw everything from the car. It is very impressive and was definately worth the drive. About 6 p.m. we headed back towards downtown. Saturday Night - We stopped on our way back to Fitz at the Main Street Station and played Video Poker for an hour or so at the main bar in the the casino. I hit two 4 of a Kinds and ended up cashing out $100 up while the wife hit one 4 of a kind and still managed to end up losing $20. This just wasn't her weekend. On a side note, the last trip we took she split a couple of Poker tournament pots and ended up winning around $800 for the trip so I couldn't hold this bad run against her. Don't get me wrong, I held it over her head and used it to my advantage but I didn't hold it against her So we got back to the room at Fitzgeralds about 9 or so and I'm finally feeling about 95% normal. We showered, , got dressed, and headed down to the Casino. Saturday night was pretty uneventful. I lost about $100 playing that stupid Let it Ride game that always seems to suck me in at least once per trip but there was a pretty good hand while I was at the table. The dealers up cards were a pair of Aces (yeh, everybody gets paid!). The gal to my left was holding the other two aces for 4 of a kind (50-1) for a payout 0f $750 and the guy next to her had 3 Kings in his hand for a full house (11-1) for $165. That was pretty cool too see but as usual after a big hand like that the cards went dead and we all soon got up and left. By the way the gal that won the $750 tipped the dealer a whole $5 when she left. What the hell is wrong with people? You won $750 and you tip $5? Do you think the dealers make their living on their hourly wage? Anyways, I think we finally went to bed about 3 a.m. My lovely wife by this point is down around $600 and I'm down about $150 or so. Good thing Sunday is our last day of gambling. Sunday morning - We wake up at the crack of about 10 a.m. or so (I love Vegas), get out of bed about 10:30 , (Have I mentioned that I love Vegas?), and we shower and get ready for the day. We went over to Binions and used up our comps at the coffee shop and then just fiddled around the downtown area all day. I lost another $100 at the craps table and the spousal unit dropped about another $100 between the card room and Let it Ride table. We bought a couple of souvenirs for the kid and did a little bit more gambling but nothing too exciting. About 5 p.m. or so we went back to the room and got ready for dinner. We headed down to the Treasure Island to eat Sushi at the Social House which was above average but not great. Somewhat pricey for what it was but seeing as how we are in the middle of the desert I wasn't expecting the best Sushi in the world. After dinner we wandered out front and caught the last few minutes of the pirate show. The last time I saw it about 10 years ago it was pretty lame but this time it was better and more geared towards adults with acrobatics and young skinny women in little tiny outfits dancing around. My wife says that there were Chippendale type guys running around without shirts on but I din't notice any of that . Anyways we fetched the Truck from the Valet and just cruised the strip. On the way back we stopped at the Peppermill for a drink as we had somehow never been there either. It's a pretty cool little lounge and it was worth a stop. Keeping the promise I made to myself I resisted ordering a fruity blue chick drink from hell and went with a Long Island Iced Tea instead which I figured was slightly more manly. We got back Downtown about 11 p.m. or so went over to Binions and played 2-4 limit poker for a few hours and went to back to the room about 3 a.m., , and then went to sleep. Monday Morning - Woke up at the crack of 11:30, got dressed, packed up, and headed home. By the way.... The elevators at Fitz are being replaced. At one point in the trip there was a guy from the elevator company working on one of them and I talked to him for a minute or two. He said the elevators are going to be much faster than before so hopefully next trip I can report that wait times at Fitz are no longer an issue.