Writing this TR took almost as long as living it! The story goes like this: Patti was in Vegas for her birthday. Hubby was going out for four days during NFR to play poker with the cowboys. Then I found out that Al and Ross were going to be there over the same weekend. Dang! I had just been to Vegas for three nights at Thanksgiving for apartment hunting, and have a scheduled trip 12/14-12/17 for the same and other pre-move stuff. But I was totally jonesing to meet up with my friends tooâ€¦ So Saturday 12/2 I sit in front of my computer in the afternoon and punch up Southwest.com. Friday nightâ€™s non-stop from BWI is available for less than $100. And there are flights available Sunday 12/10 for less than $100 tooâ€¦ unfortunately itâ€™d have to be the 9:15am flight out unless I wanted to arrive after 11pm back on the east coast. Ughâ€¦ I have to drive myself. Screw that. Morning will have to do. How much would this ticket cost? Hmmm, $193? Hahaha, thatâ€™s less than hubby paid for his roundtrip ticket back in October. So I bought the ticket, at the time only about 60% certain Iâ€™d actually use it. Fast forward to Thursday night, and the temperature in Maryland is dropping by the minute and the wind is howling. I hear from John & Patti that they are out in the sunshine walking around, with short sleeved shirts on, perfectly comfortable. Iâ€™m pumping gas into my vehicle, wearing sweaters (plural) and my suede coat and freezing my hind end off. Screw this. Iâ€™m going to Vegas tomorrow night. And so I did. My flight arrived 30 minutes early and I alerted John to my presence, got in the taxi line (fairly long at 8:45pm on a Friday, but moving steadily) and get in the cab for Wynn. I knew that the northbound side of Paradise is currently closed, and that the rodeo is in town at Thomas & Mack, so I didnâ€™t say â€œno tunnelâ€. I realized that might be the best possible way to Wynn. Traffic was light to non-existant but it still cost about $21 to get to Wynn. That is probably going to be the last time I fly into McCarran and take a taxiâ€¦ the next two trips I have a car rental, after that Iâ€™ll be coming home when I arrive and my own vehicle will be at the airport somewhere, parked. Got to Wynn, still not having heard from hubby. Oddâ€¦ I stow my suitcase and coat at the bell desk and play a little quarter video poker. They do have some 10/7 DDB games, near Red 8. I finish playing after about 30 minutes, and am even for the session. I pulled a straight flush in that session, so I was clearly down at one point so it felt good to end even. Still no word from John, so I leave a not-so-nice message starting with the words â€œwhere the everlovingâ€¦â€ (you figure out the rest), and go in search of food. Iâ€™m still in a soup mood so swung by Red 8 (they all sounded too spicyâ€¦ donâ€™t want spicy when I know Iâ€™m not going to be staying up much longer and go to bed and have odd dreams. How about Zoozacrackers? They are open but itâ€™s so quiet in there they might as well be closed. Nahâ€¦ ok, coffeeshop. They have French onion soup on the menu, and a soup du jour. I sit at the bar and ask what kind of soup that is. Itâ€™s New England clam chowder. Oh yes, please! I get that, some cornbread and water. Yeah, I knowâ€¦ been in Vegas for an hour and all Iâ€™ve had to drink is H2O. The soup was very good, btw, all full of tender clams and not too heavy on the onion and potato side. Finally my phone rings while Iâ€™m finishing up the soup. Hubby is sorry â€“ heâ€™d fallen asleep. I didnâ€™t tell him that was weak. He already knew. Thought it was going to be a half hour nap, but he crashed for four hours. Yes, the beds at Wynn ARE that comfortable. We go to the room and retrieve my stuff from bell desk. Meanwhile he calls Patti to see where she is, and we ascertain that a trip downtown is needed. I hear him fighting not to say â€œweâ€™ll be there in a bitâ€. Taxi up the Strip (no traffic at all) with a great cabbie from New Jersey who loves roller coasters, so we had a nice conversation. We ask to be dropped off at the Golden Nugget so I can check out the pool (looks really nice, that shark is freakinâ€™ HUGE) and The Grotto (very attractive restaurant, but the menu is not much more than pizza at this time of night, so not really what John wants for dinner since thatâ€™s what he had for lunch). I told John to go ahead to LVC and Iâ€™ll be about 10 minutes behind. I knew heâ€™d do good pointer dog duties and just stand there looking at Patti so I could find her easily. And help block her view of me coming up from behind her. I walk past the LVC doors closest to GN to enter the ones by Main Street. Patti said she was at â€œthe only roulette tableâ€ at the casino. I couldnâ€™t remember where it was, but knew a bank of slot machines would cover my entrance from that side. I saw John immediately, although I couldnâ€™t see her. I knew she had to be there if he was standing guard duties like he was. So I snuck around to come in from behind her and whispered to two girls standing behind her that I needed to surprise her so if they could move just for a minuteâ€¦ I reach for Pattiâ€™s back and give a little tickle/rub. She says, to no one in particular â€œsee? I even get back rubs here!â€ And she enjoys it before she starts to lean her head backwards, upside down. She was so not expecting to see my face. I kissed her on her forehead while her eyes were catching the fact that this was not the face she was expecting and she couldnâ€™t quite catch who it was at first, upside down. Then all of a sudden her eyes flew open with recognition and she squealed. Surprise a success. She was enjoying playing roulette, a game neither John nor I will even contemplate playing. So he & I moved to a blackjack table. We play for about 40 minutes or so, hubby gaining $25 while I only lost $5 so an unusually good session for us playing at the same table. Patti comes over and joins us, and we start talking about dinner ideas. She has a coupon for the Upper Deck, which I am not too keen on trying. John ate there earlier in the week and said it wasnâ€™t horrible, and he lived. Not exactly a ringing endorsement, and coupled with other things Iâ€™ve heardâ€¦ I just want to find somewhere else. Even though I have supposedly already had supperâ€¦ The line at the cage to cash our chips is crazy-long (and only one cashier working) so we decide to not wait. Weâ€™ll be back Downtown on Saturday night, and worst-case scenario, Iâ€™ll be back either next weekend or just after the first of the year. We decide on Magnoliaâ€™s at the Four Queens. Iâ€™d never eaten there so wanted to try somewhere new. Patti tells me their Prime Rib special ($6.40 with a players club cardâ€¦ I search and find that I did indeed bring it with me) is to die for. I order that, medium, a baked potato and minestrone. Andâ€¦ a ginger ale. Sometimes Iâ€™m just not in the mood for alcohol. This was one of those times. The minestrone was pretty good â€“ tangy but not overly done, and full of beans and veggies and pasta. Unfortunately the rest of the meal did not live up to the starter. I found the prime rib to be dry and without flavor, and my potato was about three-quarters bakedâ€¦ a little crunchy on the inside. I didnâ€™t touch the soggy looking mixed veggies. They looked horrible. Unfortunately, this was a â€œyou get what you pay forâ€ meal. But it wasnâ€™t really worth $6.40. I far prefer the cheap meals Iâ€™ve had at Binions and Ellis Island. On top of that, our server had far too many tables to cover, and it took us too long to get the check, especially at a time where Iâ€™d worn out not only my first wind but my second and third and it was way past my bedtime. Paid up at Magnoliaâ€™s, taxied back to Wynn, and hit the worldâ€™s most comfy bed and crashed for about 5 hours.