Warning this is long! But worth the read. The first day was crazy! Vegas – Friday June 11 ~ Monday June 14 My plans: This Vegas trip was one that I was looking forward to for a long time. We had booked it in Feb 04’ with the intentions of celebrating our 9 year anniversary late (its in March). Since my best friend Clarissa had just gotten engaged to Salvador’s (my honey) cousin. We figured we would let them know our plans and if they were interested they could book along with us. Well plans worked out & all 4 of us booked threw Expeida to stay @ New York, New York for 4 days/3 nights. So all we had to do was countdown & get ready for our trip. Well along the waiting process other’s jumped on the Vegas bandwagon & over all we would end up having a total of 5 couples and 1 single coming out. Most of us arriving on Friday & leaving on Monday. Count down is over – Our trip begins Friday June 11 Friday morning I wake up and of course I am feeling really nervous for the flight as always. I have no idea why I get like this every time – But I do. We take showers and wait till Clarissa & Andrew comes to the house for a ride to the airport. My mom arrives in her van to take us all over. They arrive, we pack the van and we are off. We catch a little bit of the Friday traffic, but in about 15 min we arrive @ American West check in outside. We get our boarding passes & the guy that helps us tells Clarissa that her luggage is already over 50 pounds so he advises her not to bring back too much. We laugh and tease the whole way that they are going to leave her luggage behind! Ha Ha The airport is pretty packed and there is no place to sit @ the gate area. We wait a while and discuss what we want to do when we get there. (Side note: for Clarissa’s b-day I had bought her ton’s of books for Vegas since she is a Vegas Virgin). We get a call before getting on the plane that our other friends had just landed in Vegas and its crazy hot & they tried checking in @ NY NY & their line was long & their room wasn’t ready. So our plans to check in @ the airport might be better. Our plan ride was ok, I had the window seat but switched with Salvador so I could talk between him & Clarissa. Poor Andrew had to sit away from us about 8 rows ahead of us. I had water & Salvador started drinking on the plane. Our plane landed about 10:40am. 10 minutes ahead of schedule .. .NICE!! We go down the escalators to the luggage area & its jammed packed. Its crazy, people are everywhere. Too many people, I should have put butter on my shoulder’s to get threw the mass of people better. It was a pain trying to get threw to our carousel. Finally we get out luggage & Clarissa is thankful that they didn’t leave her 50+ pound bag behind! We decided on the plane we were going to try our luck @ the airport check in, since I had never checked in the airport before I had no idea where it was. I asked a guy that looked like he worked @ the airport and he said, go all the way to the other end near the construction. We all looked at each other and say “ lets go”. What a pain it was to fight all the people going the other direction. (Just to let you guys know – The airport check-in is blocked by lots of construction in the middle of the airport. It’s really hard to even know its back there, with all the construction going on, you think nothing is behind there.) So we finally get there & I tell them that I have already upgraded & that I had requested to be on the same floor/ near our friends. She tells the lady next to her that is checking in Clarissa & Andrew. They end up also on the 25th floor We ask for a limo to the hotel & we are off. Since we got a limo last time we remembered we had it for an hour, we asked to be taken around the strip & the driver said sorry trip is only to the hotel & that’s it. I was a little pissed about that but said oh well, we will go straight to the hotel. We didn’t get help with our luggage and went straight to the Century Tower elevators. We didn’t know we had to put our key in the slot for the elevator to move. So we are standing there pushing buttons and nothing is moving. People start to shuffle in with their bags & we are all standing there looking at each other with blank faces. Then a little old lady comes in puts her key in the slot & up we go on the elevator – We all start laughing and 25th floor arrives. Our rooms were a little far from the elevators, but it was ok. When we got in it – We couldn’t believe what a great view we had. Salvador started to unpack the bags & iron a t-shirt & I went across the hall to see Clarissa’s room. What do you know – They ended up upgrading her also to a Park Ave deluxe @ no charge. I guess since I told the lady @ the airport I wanted our rooms to be close, that was the closest one and it happened to be upgraded. NICE – Another score! So finally our other friends Tom & Christina call & let us know they are also in the Century Tower and their rooms are ready. They also upgraded but to a “Players Sutie”. After refreshing – We go check it out. This room has 2 queen beds, a Jacuzzi, a table that fits 5, 2 big TV’s, surround sound, DVD player, CD player, fridge & living room area with a pull out bed. We decide that we need to eat. Our intentions were to eat @ the Aladdin – Either PF.Changs or The Cheeseburger @ the oasis. We never made it to either. We ended up stopping at the M&M store, passing the new food court on the strip. ( I didn’t know they had all that till that day – The Wendy’s, Panda Express, Wienerschnitzel, Ice cream & I think pizza place) We walked by the Harley Davison Restaurant and decided we would try it out. I have never eaten there before & I didn’t remember getting any bad reviews from the board, so we all agreed we would try it out. It was 6 of us, so the wait was about 10 minutes. We sat in a round booth that was a little tight, but we made the best of it. At first I was a little hesitant. I was thinking I was going to skip the whole meal & go straight for dessert. But the way it happens in Vegas is usually we only end up eating once during the day – And then another time @ night. I ended up ordering the Chicken Fried Steak with mash potatoes; Salvador got the BBQ platter with BBQ ribs, BBQ chicken, side of fries with bbq beans & 2 huge slices of watermelon. I think everyone else got bbq also. When my food came I couldn’t believe how much food was on there. There was 2 huge slabs of chicken fired streak & a huge pile of potatoes. I could barley finish one & left most of the potatoes. When we were eating we noticed that the other table had this huge glass of beer with a tap @ the end. For $25 bucks you could get a little keg for your table that served about 6 beers. It was on & cracking – We ordered that & drank away till we were done. After eating & drinking a lady came over & asked if we wanted our picture taken. $8.00 for a picture of all of us nice & full with a big huge glass of beer in front of us. We get the bill - $168.00 for 6 people and small little keg of beer. Not bad. We pay & off we are walking the strip. We walk over to the Aladdin to shop for a belt for Andrew since he forgot his back @ home. The guys stop & buy a cigar while we are talking & realize we left the picture we had bought back @ the Harley Store. Shit – We make a note to go back after we finish up there. I mean honestly no one is going to take off with a picture of us, so we decide one of us will go back after we are done there. So we head off shopping threw the Aladdin, We get stuck @ the Gap for at least 30/45 min. Some of us are just looking while the other are actually buying. The guys wait patently out side when Andrew comes running to tell us he left his BRAND NEW glasses he got for graduation @ the cigar shop – The guys take off to get them. We stay & try on clothes, make our purchases and wait. We decided to walk down a little to a bench. The other 2 girls go to the bathroom while I attempt to sit down. While sitting down I feel a something cold run down my leg, I get up quickly to see that I just sat in a big puddle of soda that was just spilled. I guess since I was so involved in waiting for the guys to come back, I just sat down without looking down. Damn, I was all wet; it had looked like I had just pissed all over myself. The bad luck that everyone is having is starting to shift onto me. Luckily Clarissa had a sweater that was wrapped around her waist so I tie it up & we decide that my pants are just to wet, I really can’t be walking around Vegas with a wet ass! So we split up, and we walk back to NY NY making a pit stop @ The Monte Carlo for a bottle to drink. It was so hot while walking by the time we made it back to our rooms, my pants were dry. I change & head back to Tom & Christina’s room to pop the bottle we had just bought. We get another phone call to tell us that some of our other friends have finally made it in to Vegas. They are staying @ the Luxor so with time they are going to make their way over & have some drinks with us & lounge in the room. There is sort of a blur from the time we went back to Tom & Christina’s room then to getting ready to go out. I really don’t remember what we did. But I just remember going back up to our room to get ready for the longest night of my Vegas life. So we go up start to get ready, I got to Clarissa & Drews room to have her help me fix my hair & have another female give me her opinion on which shoes to wear with my outfit. I make my mind up, I see Sal pull the room key out of his wallet & he takes my other shoes back to the room. He comes back – sits back on the lounge chair & we decide that we are going to go to the Foundation Room @ Mandalay since we have V.I.P for Friday & Saturday. We go down the elevator straight to the taxi line. And in a van we are off to Mandalay Bay. Salvador has a bad habit of talking to every cab driver in Vegas. No matter how long the ride he talks to him non-stop. Sal is sitting in front, me & clarissa in the middle seat, drew in the back. While talking to Clarissa about what a great club we are about to go to, I over hear Salvador calling the taxi driver Kim – I giggle since Kim is a girl name, and the taxi driver explains he is from Korea & it’s a very common name there. And bla bla bla bla … I never look @ the taxi driver’s full name or even the # of the Taxi – And I don’t make a note of what taxi service it is. Well let the nights begin. We get off the taxi & we are just about to make into the doors to Mandalay when Salvador looks @ me and says wait – WHERE IS MY WALLET. At first I thought he was playing. I figured right about after he said that he would end up saying “ Just kidding” – But his look on his face reassured me he wasn’t kidding. So I am like damn – We have to go back to NY NY – We tell Drew & Claire that we will meet back up with them, we will be right back – WRONG! We get back & tear apart both rooms, before leaving I asked Clarissa’s to give me her key since the last time I seen him he was sitting down in their room. We figure the only other place he was sitting was in the taxi. That’s when I start to panic. We didn’t know what taxi service it was, we didn’t know the taxi number. All we knew was that it was an old Koren man named Kim that was driving a white van. The panic really beings, we start to think about all the “ WHAT IF’S” – “What if the next passengers picked it up while getting in & didn’t return in, they could be charging up stuff at this very moment.” “ What if he didn’t really drop it in the taxi, what if he got pick-pocketed” – Gosh – All this things that started running threw our heads. We weren’t too sure what to do. Its Friday night and the strip is packed – We felt helpless, what could we do in Vegas with no ID. NOTHING. So we decide to take a taxi back to Mandalay to tell Clarissa & Drew we are just going to fly out Saturday morning. We explain to the Taxi driver what has happened & he gives me a card with #’s to call it in lost. We already came to a conclusion we aren’t going to get it back. Before we enter Mandalay I call to cancel all our Atm/Visa’s (mine would end up getting canceled also since we share a joint account). Cause really he’s not going to be able to gamble with no id, club with no id, see strippers with no id. Nothing!!! Can’t even drink with no Id in some places. So we say – We have VIP @ the foundation room and we already know we don’t need an ID there, so we figure the best thing we can do, since our night is already ruined the best we can make it, is at least take Clarissa & Drew up there threw Salvador’s VIP, then leave them there to dance & drink the night away while we figure out what we are going to do. We figure we aren’t going to stay in Vegas. We will be coming home Saturday morning. As we prepare to stand in the taxi line I look up close my eyes & say in the most serious voice ever, “ this really isn’t happening to us, if there is a god or anyone cares about us in this whole world, somehow, someway – We will get the wallet back.” I open my eyes & see the taxi line has moved up. While I am waiting there, Salvador wanted to walk up & down the line of Taxi’s to see if maybe he remembered a logo of the taxi we were in, anything at this point would work for us. It’s our turn to get in a taxi. I look to my left & you will never guess what KIM IS DROPPING OFF SOME OTHER PEOPLE! The same taxi driver the same car everything. I run over, I start writing down names, numbers, license plates, everything. I am elated – I really can’t believe he is there. About a million taxi drivers & our luck, this guy drives back to the same place where we are leaving – There has been a time span of at least 45 min since the time we were in his taxi to the time we were no leaving again. It’s close to 1am. So we get in the taxi & we ask the driver if he seen the wallet. Kim says, “ Get out of my Van you guys are crazy”. We are like what the hell, we were just in here & we knew already it was lost in the taxi. Salvador starts to get upset & yells at him, I ask him to calm down because yelling isn’t going to get the wallet back. Security comes because now Kim is yelling and wailing his hands out the window & Salvador is yelling cause all he wants is his wallet back. We were getting so upset, we knew the wallet was there for one main reason. Salvador’s betting stub he had made for the Lakers that day was in his wallet & what was in the middle consol? His stub!!!! So that jerk had already gone threw it. All I could do was try to stay calm. Security from Mandalay said we couldn’t do anything. If he said he didn’t have it, he didn’t all we could so was call. They gave us a list of more #’s to call & that was all. So we go back to NY NY – I call every # on the list of Taxi services and put a request for a lost item. I also call Kim’s taxi service and complain about what had happened. We at least feel a little bit better having all his information. I call and they say that he hasn’t called anything in. We haven’t had anything to eat since earlier & we figure we better get something to eat before going to bed. So we get in a taxi to go. At this point we had, had enough. We were done. The first day in Vegas – Our first night out we couldn’t think of anything worse to happen. When I had called to tell them about the wallet I left my name & both our cell #’s & all the information possible to describe his wallet. At this point Salvador just wanted to go home. So I told him not to worry about it, he felt by him losing the wallet really killed our trip. Well right before we were going to make a left onto Las Vegas Blvd. My phone rings with a 702 area code. All I heard was “ WE FOUND YOUR WALLET, PLEASE come to bla bla bla bla.” I am not to familiar with what & where she is saying & I ask the taxi driver if he can get there. The taxi driver says yes and tells us that “ Shit like this never happens, you never get the wallet back especially in Vegas!” I feel so lucky, we arrive – They give us our wallet & everything is in there, even the betting stub! All we could do was laugh. Its about 2am now and everyone else is already @ leaving club RA – We call everyone to tell them the great news & they think we are kidding. To cut this day short – We gave the Taxi driver about $50 for a $15 ride to pick up the wallet & headed back to Luxor to meet up with everyone. Took a limo to Crazy Horse 2 got some drinks, lap dance’s & a few #’s. I look at my watch and its 5:45am – I tell everyone we area leaving for the night – too much for just one day in Vegas ~~ we were off to NY NY for some sleep. Saturday June 12 Our phone rings around 9am and our friends want to meet up for breakfast – I explain to them that after they left Crazy Horse around 3am – We stayed till almost 6am and we aren’t ready for Saturday just yet. We get up anyways because someone was pounding on our door asking us to “OPEN UP” – Sal goes to the door & its some drunk guy and a girl knocking on the wrong door. Nerds! We proceed to get up, I mention to Salvador that his clothes from the night before smell like trash & he explains to me “ Well what did you think was rubbing all over us last night.” HA HA We get ready & meet up with friends to have breakfast, everyone is still hung over & tired so we just go downstairs and eat at America’s in NY NY. From a 1-10 – I give that place a 5, it was all right. I couldn’t find anything on the menu that was going to unclog my head so I ordered a burger but barley touched it; I think it came with fries too. For 4 of us it was like $50. Not bad we tell our friends we just aren’t ready for the day yet so we say we want to hang out in the room first. We end up on the 19th floor to Tom & Christina’s room. Tom opens the door & he is still in his clothes from the night before. He said after we left the Luxor Christina was so drunk she couldn’t remember where she left her purse. I couldn’t believe it, but they called and it ended up being in Joe & Rachel’s room @ the Luxor, so after going back there, they stayed @ some bar and got wasted. I looked over and Christina had the covers over her head, I peaked in them to make fun & she was also in her clothes from last night with droll all dried on the side of her face. I guess she had to be carried back to the room. Crazy crazy night. We end up at the Forum shops, and end up shopping the day away. Today was Saturday and the rest of the gang (Jessica, Ruben & Sara) was coming in from LA. They finally call to say that they are in town. They drove from LA so they want to chill out before doing anything. Its about 6pm already & we forgot to call for dinner reservations. It was Jessica’s 21st b-day that day so we wanted to do something fun. All 11 of us finally agreed on some place to eat. Benihana @ the LV Hilton. The only thing that was open was 6:30 & 9:00. It was already 6:05 & there was no way everyone would get ready in time for dinner in 20 min. So we took the 9pm reservation for all 11 of us. Everyone arrives we have a wonderful dinner and everyone eventually leaves full & drunk. By the time dinner was done it was already 11:45. Even though our reservation was @ 9pm, by the time we got seated, and ordered, the chef didn’t come for at least 30 min. But in that time we had enough drinks to get our tummy’s ready for some grub & our minds ready for the night. We decided we are going to go to the lounge that Christina & Tom were @ the night before for more drinks, till we decide what we are going to do. Me & Sal had VIP again at the Foundation room but it was for us & 2 other people. There was no way we were going to choose who was going that late in the night with everyone there. So we said we just going to have to go next time. While @ the Luxor Joe remembers some guy that he met that said we could get everyone in for free @ Sapphire. Another strip club. Well Joe calls the guy & things seem a little sketchy so I tell them forget it – I don’t mind paying to get in, we will just go and see what happens. We go, its $20 a person to get in & this place is huge. When you enter it looks like a entrance to a hotel, its so nice in there, I really kept saying “ Are you sure we are in a strip club, this is too nice for one”. We get drinks – They seat all of together & the show begins. People are getting lap dances left and right. There is some other stuff going on that I had to look back twice to make sure I was seeing what I was seeing – And yes it was happening right there. We stay for a couple of hours and the cigar smell is really turning my stomach by now – We decided we have had enough T & A for the night. Its about 4am and we go back to NY NY. Sal says he has $150 in chips, he wants to throw some dice, I tell him ok I will play the $1 slots. I come back about 30 min later, he is up $100 and I tell him lets take and go to bed its getting close to 5am and I don’t think I can stand any longer. He makes 2 final bets, we leave the craps table he is only up $50. We wash up, lay down and we are down for the count! Sunday June 13 This time we didn’t get up till about 11am cause I heard Sal getting sick in the restroom. I guess all the drinking was finally catching up to him. He was going threw a bad hangover & all I wanted to do was sleep. Everyone decided that today was our day to have everyone over in the morning and so within an hour or so – Everyone was either knocking or calling to come in. Tom & Christina were going back home today, so they checked out their room & brought their luggage over to our room. Joe & Rachel were also leaving so they checked out of the Luxor put their things in Clarissa & Drews room. We hadn’t heard from Jessica, Ruben & Sara since after dinner the night before. I guess they checked into their time share & they were off getting drunk some where. We said our goodbye’s to Tom & Christina as we walked them down the hallway to the elevators, they both were looking like death upon leaving and they just wanted to go home. As were walking back to our room, we got some fresh towels & decided to get ready for the day. We took showers & went to the little shops to get some food to go and back up to our room to recover. The rest of them called to ask if we wanted to go to the pool for a while. We agreed even though Sal was still getting sick. We changed into our swim suits – Walked over to the pool to find it not that crowded. We ended up getting the pool side special that included padded chair’s, drinks ( water, soda’s juice) , snacks( chips, pretzel’s, fruit) , floating beds for the water & a free item @ the store. For $40 is wasn’t bad. We stayed out there for a while till we just couldn’t stand the sun anymore. Sal lunged in the pool and I could tell he was feeling better which made me feel better about the rest of the day! We said we wanted to go watch Game 4 of the Lakers vs the Piston’s @ the ESPN zone. So we had to be back to the room by 5pm to get ready and have enough time to get a table. Well you know when you are with a lot of people things like that never work out. By the time we went down to the ESPN zone the it was already in the middle of second quarter & the wait was about an hour & a half. We went upstairs where the games were to watch the rest & try to pass time. But we got tired of the wait & we bailed out, we went back to the room to order room service. I couldn’t belive it was already going to be 9pm and we hadn’t really done anything all day long. We ate in the room & everyone finished their meal downstairs – We found out that Drew & Clarissa also bailed and ate room service in room too. I think everyone was finally feeling the weekend hitting them hard. The plan was to go to House of Blues since we had some free passes but I didn’t feel up to it. I needed a nap, some coffee or something to snap me out of it. Salvador just needed some water and no more liquor for the rest of the time being there. We just weren’t up to it. Joe & Rachel were supposed to fly out that night, but decided to stay in Vegas for one more night. Since they had already checked out of the Luxor they got a room @ NY NY for a rate of $79. Not bad We decide we aren’t up for it, they go – And Me, Salvador, Jessica, Ruben & Sara decide to walk the strip to see all the great lights. It was already 12pm and the LV Blvd was packed! The streets were packed with people walking up and down. It was nice & warm with a light breeze. It was nice, being outside was feeling good. We end up stopping and all the little shops here & there and buying stuff. We stopped at the Aladdin to gamble. Sal went to the craps table, I went to the wheel of fortune $1 slots & the rest went to play Black Jack. About an hour later, I went to meet Sal and he was down, I left him to find the rest and they had moved from Black Jack to 25-cent machines – They were down & the slots were sucking up their money. I looked @ my watch it was about 2am. I thought I better find Sal so we can either get going or cash out. I found him and he was back up! We left walking to Paris to catch a cab, while walking I looked back and Sal was walking towards the bush, I was like damn he is going to get sick – But nope better luck – He found a $50 bill on the floor! NICE Since I had canceled our Atm/Visa’s on Friday – We were stuck with only the money we took. We had a good enough cash flow to last us our days there, but we always have the ATM/Visa for back up or big purchases. But this time we didn’t have that option. Since we have a credit union they are closed on the weekends & the # we had only worked during M-F hours. So finding the money & being up from the craps table was a good thing by Sunday night. We went back to NY NY and played more downstairs. We said our goodbyes to the LA gang since we would be leaving Monday back to San Jose. We left about after an hour playing headed to the small store for some last minute snacks and up the elevator. Since Sal had been getting sick all day he wanted to eat. We ordered room service again & ate some appetizers. I looked at the room clock and it was 3:45am. I was done for the night. The last think I remember was after I changed for bed, Sal rolled our table to the hallway & I was out like the light – Done for the weekend. Monday June 14th I had called the night before for a wake up call around 7:30am. I wanted to get pack the bags, do last min souvenir shopping, grab something to eat & off to the airport around 10:00 for our 11:30am flight. But as always things don’t go as planned. They wake up call came, but I went back to bed. Clarissa called to see if we were awake around 8:30 and I got up to take a shower. Sal was still sleeping when I got out of the shower & I figured I would just let him sleep. He got about 10 min later to help me pack things up. He got showered & ready. I looked @ the clock and it was already 9:15. There was no way were were going to go get food & shop in 45 min. I walked over to Clarissa’s room to see where they were at & they were in the same boat. They didn’t think we had enough time so we just called to get help with our entire luggage. For some reason I couldn’t use the use the check our feature on the TV. I kept getting a message to either go down or call. So I called to check out. When I called the gentleman explained I would be getting a refund of $81.75 ( the total for the upgrade). I was sort of confused and said ok. I mentioned it to Salvador and he was also wondering why. We said our goodbye to our wonderful view and got ready to leave. So the guy came for our entire luggage and down we went. We went to the Harley store in NY NY got some last minute things in the Soho store. Went to the front desk for a print out of our refund & took a taxi to the airport. No one was paying attention to the time. It was already 10:50 while at the light to the airport. I was thinking there is no way we can have bad luck leaving & miss the plane. Right when we are going to get off our taxi to unload the luggage guess who we see in a Taxi right next to us. KIM! The damn driver from Friday night. Sal said he was going to kick his Van but we all laughed and preceded to get out. We got our boarding passes outside & checked our luggage. We had about 20 min now till get to the gate and board. Everyone was hungry so we agreed to just meet everyone back @ the gate. Well to our surprise we get to the gate and out flight had been delayed. So instead of leaving LV @ 11:30am, they announce that we won’t board till 11:55am. Cool enough time to get something to eat and come back. We go come back eat & hear another announcement – Our flight won’t be leaving now till 12:05pm. Something about the crew was going to check the engine and let it run for a while. Just great – get my nerves going more! As it is I am scared to fly & then they say something like that over the mic! Great. Its 12:05pm and nothing. The gate is packed with ton’s of people and they come on again to say that we won’t board till 12:15, then again they come on @ 12:35pm to get in line to board. We finally get on the plane. And we drive around for a while, stop and don’t’ leave till about 12:55. Before getting comfortable I looked back & Andrew & Clarissa were already passed out before the plane took off. Besides a crying baby the whole way – The flight was pretty quiet. We did have some turbulence on the way home. But for the most part me & Sal dozed off. We arrived in San Jose around 2pm and went to get our luggage and off to the house. We were finally home and all the tiredness was kicking in overtime! -------------------- Overall thoughts: ~ Losing the wallet on the first night was really the worst time I have ever had in Vegas Period ~ Getting the wallet back after loosing it felt like winning the lottery. ~ I will never travel with that many people to Vegas again. 11 people is just to many people to keep up with while there. ~ I really didn’t get to do as much as I wanted – But that always happens ~ Food @ Harley Davison was better then expected ~ The Strippers in Vegas need to work on getting better boob jobs. Not a good sight! ~ The Park Ave room was nice & I would stay there again. ~ I am still tired from the whole weekend and I want to go back to Vegas already! Sounds like I have the Vegas Blues already!