Saturday, November 20, 2010

Vacation Day 1–Las Vegas here we come!

In October Minsan had an SAP conference in Las Vegas to attend. With some frequent flyer miles and staying with Minsan I was able to go for a pretty minute amount of money too. Mainly I was just thankful for an opportunity to see my Uncle Rick who lives in Pahrump, NV (about 1 hour out of Las Vegas). Yay! The plan was that while Minsan was busy during the day with conferences that I could be off gallivanting where ever the wind might blow me. Nice to have some freedom every now and again!

So, Minsan and I were off to Vegas on October 18th. We had to get up at 3:00 am so that we could get me to the airport before 6:30 am. His flight didn’t leave until 11:30, so he was very kind to sacrifice his sleep for my earlier flight. The funny part was that he was supposed to leave later than me and yet still arrive before me. The whole frequent flyer mile thing kept us from flying together there and back. I was just glad that we would be together in Vegas. I packed my bag with lots to entertain myself since I had the flight that had lay over in AZ. I figure a good book, my camera, MP3 player, and my mini laptop would be sufficient to entertain me on the plane, while waiting for my lay over, and on the plane again. My frequent flyer miles allowed me to fly first class on this days flying. For that I am grateful since the Minneapolis airport is SOOOOO busy on Monday morning. The security line was super long. So much so that if I hadn’t been flying first class at that time, I may not have made my flight. BUT, since I was flying first class, I walked to the front of the check in line, used a special security line and got on my plane right away. From the time I entered the airport to the time that I was ready at my gate was a measly 20 minutes. Isn’t that crazy! Anyway, I am thankful that it worked out so well for me. I get that the seats are more comfortable, you get served beverages right away when you get on the plane while people are being seated (including fresh coffee) and free snacks that you don’t have to pay extra for, BUT the quicker line thing is really the BOMB when it comes to flying! Not that I will get to do that all that often, but it sure was fun for this time.
These first shots I took of the day was just some people watching from the Phoenix Airport. I arrived there at 9:ish their time and had 3 hours before my next flight. It  gave me plenty of time to have coffee, eat some breakfast and veg with my book and/or talk on the cell.
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From one side of the airport to the other is a HUGE hike at the Phoenix airport. In fact other travelers that fly 3-4 times a week actually hate this airport. Surprisingly they had good things to say about the Minneapolis one. Hmmm. Now in my case since I had a THREE HOUR lay over, the long distance from one side to the other was a moot point!
One thing we don’t have though is mountains in the background!
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When all was said and done Minsan’s plane left Minneapolis almost an hour late, so I actually waited for him there (again, Starbucks and a good book make any wait very bearable!).
We grabbed our luggage and rental car and headed for our Westin hotel. It was two blocks off the strip so it wasn’t one of the fancy resort hotels, but truthfully it suited us fine in the end. It wasn’t in the chaos of the strip so we could come and go really easily. It still had a restaurant and casino, but none of the craziness!
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The only funny thing was that our our window was this scene. Fancy hotel, terrible back yard. One block you have $125 a week studio apartments, then a parking lot, then beautiful hotels. Crazy!IMG_7509 copy
For dinner that night we went to a blues memorabilia and music. Well they had music playing through the speakers until they decided that whatever game was on that night was more important Sad smile. One thing to note, the Las Vegas restaurants are very, very dark. So dark in fact that this picture barely works and the thought of taking pictures of food was nil. IMG_7516IMG_7514 copy
The restaurant we were at was inside the Mirage. I took just a few shots of the night life while we were outside waiting for the valet to bring our car back. Minus our hotel, it was actually easier to let the valet take care of your car. IMG_7547 copyIMG_7551IMG_7531 copyIMG_7535 copyIMG_7542IMG_7545
Looks like the view of our back yard looks a little better with the lights on. IMG_7559 copy
All in all our travel day was successful. We made it safe and sound back together and enjoyed a good night of sleep. Let me tell you, I was passed out in bed quite early from the early rise that day!

1 comment:

  1. first class, my my, how fancy ;) pretty night time shots!