For some reason we decided to spend a day and a half of our vacation in Las Vegas. I hadn’t been there for years and just thought it might be a cheep place to find some free entertainment and have a little quality (but inexpensive) family time. I know, what on earth was I thinking? I just remembered all those $3.99 buffets when we stopped there for dinner on a high school bus trip to California. Well, over the past 15 years those buffets have gone way up in price, the free entertainment has gotten a bit raunchy (as my brother in law rob put it, the pirate show in front of Treasure Island has put the “Ho” back into “yo ho ho”) and the streets have been littered with skanky ads and not so wholesome pictures. On top of all that, it’s nearly impossible to get a stroller and three kids down the strip…..we probably took 134 elevator rides in the 32 hours we were there.
Despite all of this, we did manage to have a pretty good time. Thankfully our kids are too young to absorb a lot of the raunchiness that is Las Vegas. They loved all the lights and watching all the people. Charlie kept asking Jeff what all those cool sounding machines with all the lights were. Jeff explained that those are the machines that take people’s money. Charlie thought that was pretty dumb (he’s pretty into the word ‘dumb’ right now). We told the kids that Las Vegas was the capitol of fake things and challenged them to look for things that were real. We found some beautiful flowers (outside and at the Bellagio), some really cool fish in a huge aquarium (where Hazel got to see and interact with a REAL MERMAID!), some amazing lions and lots of interesting people. We also saw a lot of fake things. Jeff and I decided that this may be as close as our kids get to Paris and Venice and Egypt for quite a while, so we tried to educate them a bit on the amazing places that these gimmicky casinos were trying to mimic.
The kids liked the Bellagio fountains the best. They are pretty spectacular, if you ask me. And, once again, this little miss wanted nothing more than to assert her independence and walk around. And somehow we had lost her shoes in one of those darn elevators. Good bye Las Vegas…..I don’t think we’ll be coming back anytime soon.