Day 43 - 07/08/2002 - Las Vegas, Los Angeles USA
In the morning, I went up to the top of the Stratosphere Tower with Robin and Travis. It is a high tower at one end of the strip, so you get a good view of most of Las Vegas and the surrounding area. On the top, there are rides like a roller-coaster and a thing that throws you up in the air above the top of the tower ... it is advertised as the highest ride in the world ... looked like fun, but since the next few days are going to be filled with fun park rides, I thought I would not bother wasting my money now.
Robin and Travis had a car, and it made moving around Las Vegas a lot easier so we got to see quite a few hotels/casinos in a reasonable amount of time.
First we went to New York New York hotel/casino. It pretty much looks like what I would expect New York to look like, so it did not impress me as much as the other hotels because I have seen plenty of cities like New York and I was more interested in things that I had not seen.
We then went to MGM Grand which had a nice enclosure of lions - they are so massive and beautiful. Next was Excalibur - in the theme of Medieval times. And lastly, we went to Luxor - in the theme of Egypt.
It was almost time to leave to get my plane to Los Angeles to get my plane, and I realised that I had managed to spend my whole time in Las Vegas with betting any money ... so I decided to place a bet (I mean, how could I say that I had been to Las Vegas without placing a single bet?) ... so I put 25 cents into a slot machine ... and I WON! I got back five quarters - I considered this to be a good win and I collected my money and left ... so, I have become on of the few people to leave a Las Vegas casino without losing any money.
We decided to get something to eat at "In And Out" the place which has this name because you are meant to be "in and out" ... unfortunately, this was not the case (again) - we were stuck in the San Francisco store for quite a while too ... of of the ladies heard me asking if "in and out" meant you should be "in and out" quickly? She said "yeah, in and out in 1 hour" ... very different from McDonald's in Australia which is relatively quick on an international level. Even worse was that they made a few mistakes on our order - they gave us the wrong stuff ... apparently this happened to a few people who both had number 62 (in the US, you get numbers after you order and you have to wait for them to make the hamburgers! and that is fast food?) ... anyhow, we had to wait for them to make our hamburgers again.
Fortunately, I still got on my flight ok after the "In And Out" ordeal. I got some nice people sitting next to me ... a Canadian and an Aussie both in the IT industry, so we got along well during the short 45 minute flight. The flight was very short, however, when we landed, they could not get the walkway to reach the plane, so we had to wait about another 45 minutes to get off the plane.
I got on a bus shuttle to go to my Disneyland (Anaheim) hotel ... and this was more painful than waiting for the plane door to open. One of the passengers had to get dropped off in the middle of nowhere and it added a lot of time to our trip ... even worse was that the driver took out the wrong luggage from the bus and neither him nor the passenger realised, and we drove off ... we had to go back and exchange the luggage. When I finally got to my hotel, I realised that Robin and Travis (who drove from Las Vegas) would probably have beat me to this place in a car, rather than using the plane and shuttle.
At my hotel, there were some nice giggling girls working as the receptionists in the hotel foyer, who kept asking me to take them to the movies ... I explained that I had already made plans to go to Disneyland tomorrow, and they wanted me to take them there instead! Must be the Aussie accent?
Before bed, I walked across the road to Disneyland (this hotel is seriously just across the road from the main entrance to Disneyland - it must be the closest hotel to Disneyland and it is still relatively cheap). I tried to get a map from the information booth, but they had run out ... the guy told me to got to the gates and get a map there ... I asked him if he could ring them on his phone before I walked over to the gates, but he told me they didn't have phones at the gates and politely pointed me in the right direction ... the gates were less than 50 meters away - I was a bit embarrassed and he must of thought I was so lazy, but I just assumed everything would be so big and so far away ... I guess I will find out more about Disneyland tomorrow.