So, this is a trip report long in the making. Taking a week off before MM3 for a training class for work, and then a week off for MM3 has made the work life very very busy and this is the first time I've been on the site since then. The next couple of weeks will probably be the same... takes twice as long as the vacation was to recover from it. It's a sad sad truth. Anyway, I arrived to Vegas on March 14 (Tuesday) and immediately headed to Enterprise to pick up my rental car. My dad was recently diagnosed with cancer and I wanted to visit him before he starts chemo treatment. He lives about 2 1/2 hours south of Vegas, but he asked me to meet him at the Glamis Sand Dunes (about 4 1/2 hours south of Vegas) to go riding in his Sand Car, as it was going to be the last time he gets to take his car out before the chemo starts and he isn't sure he'll ever be able to take the car out again. A quick background, my dad has been a mechanic since he was 14 or so, and motorized vehicles have always been a large part of our family activities. My dad and I have always talked about building a car for the Baja 500 and running the race together. That's never happened, but he finally got his sand car about a year or so ago. I've never had the opportunity to go out to the dunes (the best place to drive it!) since he's had the car, so I made sure I was going to make it down with him. We were the only two out in the entire dunes and it was a great way to spend time with my dad. Don't forget to spend time with the ones you love, our time on the this planet is extremely short, make the most out of it! Here is a picture of my dad and his sand car: View of the sunset at his campsite (which is really just a spot to stop, it is very barren out there): So, that was a great way to start a vacation! I headed back to Vegas on Wednesday morning to pick up the wife and start the Vegas vacation. I arrived to Vegas a couple of hours before her flight came in and decided to check into the hotel and get all of that set before I turned the car back into the rental company. I texted a couple of times to Kikky and Sin riding in their limo, they all seemed to be having a good time! After checking in at the Mandalay Bay, I had some time to kill before heading back to the airport in the rental car (I was going to pick up the wife, then turn in the rental car, then Enterprise was going to take us back to Mandalay Bay). I had 12 minutes before I had to leave MB, so I decided to play some blackjack. within the 12 minutes, I was up about $1000, which was the start of "the weekend where I can't loose". A very very nice way to start the trip! I pick up the wife, we did lots of stuff that day, went to the meet up at the Plaza on Wed. night, but we eventually decided to go see Purple Reign at the Monte Carlo. If you're a Prince fan, this is a must do! Thursday was more gambing and winning (about 400 this day), then lunch at Commander Palace with Kikky, Jer, Larry, Sin and Patti. The food was very good, but the Bananas Foster was excellent! Man, so good! Thanks Sin!! That night was the party at Beach Crazy's, and some pictures I promised I wouldn't post. Friday came along... the day we really went to Vegas for.. St. Patrick's Day! I'm Irish and the wife and have traditionally spent St. Paddy's Day drinking and having fun, but for the past couple of year, the kid and work have not allowed us to have the normal amount of fun (I've been away on work.. ugh!!). So, this year we were able to party it up again! We decided to head to Nine Fine Irishmen for their Celtic Feis, which opened at 11am. We got to NYNY around 10 or so and decided to gamble a bit, and walked away about 350 up. (i told you, we could not loose!!). Got in line for the Celtic Feis, watched the Pipes and Drum band march by (see picture) , paid our 10 bucks to get in (which they said could raise to over 80 before the night was over!!), then started drinking. We drank large quantities of Smithwicks (pronouced "smiticks") and Guiness throughout the day, listening to the wonderful sounds of Sin e Ri Ra ( a traditional celtic folk band): I don't remember specifics from the day, but we met lots of people, and here are some pictures with the wife with some of them: For lunch, we had some great Irish Stew and Fish and Chips at Fine Nine. Very tasty! That night, a U2 cover band played (elevation), and we had a great time listening to them as well (dont' mind that guy's big head!): On Saturday, played MM3 poker and lost, but at least I didn't loose first and have to wear that shirt! ugh!! I felt I did okay for my first time ever playing poker. After that, I went back to NYNY and Nine Fine Irishmen for the last day of their Celtic Feis. Not nearly as many people, but still lots of beer. We ate lunch there and had some potato chips with curry. Man, this was SUPER DELICIOUS! We did some other things I can't remember, gambled a bit, the eventually ended up back at Nine Fine Irishmen for the evening music show (which was to be Sin e Ri Ra again). Before that started, we decided to have dinner at Nine Fine, and had an excellent meal! Man, it was soooooo good. We had excellent Crab and Spinach Dip, Seafood Chowder (with clams and mussels!), and Horseradish encrusted Halibut. It was all amazingly good! On Sunday, we got up pretty late and needed to catch the late afternoon flight. We had breakfast at the MB coffee shop (Raffles? something like that). it was only okay. After we ate, we decided to gamble for the last time, before we had to leave for the airport. We searched all over MB to find a limit below 25 and finally found a 15 dollar table, the only one in the whole casino. We both sat down and bought in and when we left, we were up about 1000. We cashed in and went to the airpot. After all the gambling and money we spent, we still went home with much more money than we came with. We paid for every bill in cash (food, suite at the MB, everything), and had much more cash to go home with than we came with. The gambling that weekend was very very good. overall, a very nice trip! Oh, I forgot to talk about it.... we also went to Hard Rock two nights, can't even remember which ones now... but we won tons of money there. The vibe there was great. The music pumping was awesome, the crowd was electric as well, watching the basketball games. We gambled for quite a while, then when we had won our money there (Honestly, we could not loose this weekend! it was awesome!!), Emily and I watched a LA vs Vegas Go-Go girl competition. It was totally contrived, but the girls were very hot. We didn't even know it was going to happen, we just sat down in a lounge at Hard Rock, way up near the bar, next thing we know were are front and center for this go-go girl competition. that was a great show So, I rambled on a bit, got a bit lost, but I posted some pictures so maybe you made it through this rant like post. The MM3 portion of the trip was great, but it was the St. Patrick's Day celebrations that made this trip especially spectacular for us. It's like "our" holiday, especially since we both enjoy Irish music and culture so much. We are already making plans to be in Vegas for St. Patrick's Day 2007 (which is a saturday and will be even CRAZIER!!).