At about 4:00 today, the slog of work finally broke with the perfect opportunity to go on a week-long vacation -- tomorrow! I booked a direct flight (with miles, or this would have cost me several years salary to book only hours before) from JFK to LAS, leaving at 7 am! I quickly pieced together hotel comps at the M, Mandalay Bay, and the Cosmo, with 2 days in the middle for hiking in Utah. So very happy that the flight and hotels worked out so perfectly at the last minute. Then, I got a week-long rental car for only $200, including the liability insurance we citydwelling non-car owners annoyingly need to pay for. Here's my plan Wednesday- Pretending I'm Mirna and Charla from the Amazing Race at the airport. After I land, figuring out a place to buy a quick cheap bathing suit (maybe there's a Marshalls or Nordstrom Rack , something like that, between the airport and the M?). Then stop for water, cigarettes, sunblock and all the other essentials. Finally, at the M, lots and lots of pool time with very predictable Scott Turow novels and predictably delicious strawberry daiquiris. Over the past few years, I've always started my trips off at the M because the pool is so much more low key and poolside drinks more reasonably priced than strip stuff. Plus 7X points that can be cashed out the next day makes checkout more exciting than it otherwise would be. Inside the casino, I'll be the one white dude playing Bac and Pai Gow. Also hoping that the M still has high card flush. Other than that, it's blackjack and slots, and slots, and drinks, and slots, and maybe some other stuff. Budget for the day $1250. Thursday- morning pooltime followed by a scorching hot hike at Red Rock for 4 or 5 hours, then evening gambling. And a buffet! Budget for the day $500. Friday - driving out to Utah for hiking. Accommodations TBD. No drinking due to the excess of Mormons. Budget for the day - gas money. Saturday - hiking all day and driving back to arrive in Vegas around 10 to check in at Mandalay. Will (maybe) take a shower to wash hiking stench off of me. After this, some light Mandalay gambling before I start walking the strip. I'm tentatively planning to check out the relocated Krave, the gay club that now is somewhere around Monte Carlo I guess. Will probably ditch this if I don't meet any interesting people to go with or am not feeling social enough to meet randoms at the club. Budget for day - 500. Sunday - Wavepool excitement, then gambling and dinner at awesome sushi place randomly on the casino floor at Mandalay. Budget - 1k. want to try this new fangled free doubles and splits blackjack. Monday - Checking in to Cosmo. Will grab my favorite food court lunch at Venetian but probably won't play there due to their new "no millionaire - no service/decent odds" attitude. Also booked Zarkana for free on MyVegas so will check that out in the Eve. Budget 1k. Tuesday - I'll try not to drown in my whirlpool bathtub thing at the Cosmo, then I'll gamble. Budget 1k. Wednes- 830 am flight so I can make it back in time for a "celebration" at work . So annoying, but whatevs. Maybe it'll be delayed . Also, this is a solo trip since no one else in the world takes a vacation across the entire country on 12 hours notice. I think it'll be fun times though. WOHOO. Lastly, I'm sooooooooooo excited that I lost diamond status at CET this past March. Going to their crappy casinos while in Vegas has always been sort of an obligatory chore. No more!