Viva Las Vegas

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a big fan of Las Vegas. I love the shows, shopping, and people watching. So when I got the opportunity to go for a work conference I was super excited! The conference was the better part of last week. It was the first time that I was traveling by myself, and the first time that I was away from Owen for more than one night. I knew that being away from Owen was going to be hard, and I felt bad leaving Tony with all the parenting duties. They both did fine and Owen still remembered me when I got back.

The last time I flew was a few years ago, and that last time I realized that I don’t enjoy flying much. I dislike sitting in a small seat next to a bunch of strangers, and my stomach gets upset from the turbulence and pressure changes. Unfortunately the most efficient way to get to places is to fly. On the way to Vegas the turbulence wasn’t that bad, and I was able to get some reading done (Go Set A Watchman), which was very nice.

When we landed it was too early to check into the Bellagio so I gave my bags to the concierge and decided to see if I could get my nails done. Since it was still fairly early they were able to get me in. The mani/pedi was very relaxing. Once my nails looked pretty and pink I realized that I didn’t pack any sandals. I know that you are thinking that I am crazy for going to the desert without any open toe shoes, but I was here for a work conference and I only packed a carry-on. My space was limited, and I wanted to look professional. So I was making a fashion statement walking around the Bellagio with my disposable flip flops. There is always a first for everything. Thank goodness my room was ready shortly after.

I almost forgot how expensive food and drinks can be in Vegas. After the sticker shock I remembered that there are a few drug stores that I could stock up on some necessities for my room (aka wine). It seems that everyone else had the same idea. The store was packed – especially the wine aisle. Once I was able to check into my room I unloaded all of my stuff and I was hoping to go to the pool, but for some reason the weather was unseasonably cold :/. So I decided to check my email and then head to dinner with some co-workers.

We decided to stay in the Bellagio and eat at Noodles for dinner because we were all still adjusting to the time change. They had a good selection of Thai food, and I got my standard Pad Thai. It was very tasty. After dinner I registered for the conference and got some swag.

The next day was mostly filled with sessions, but in the evening we all went to the club Drai for dinner and drinks. The club was on the top of The Cromwell Hotel. It had a great view of the Bellagio fountains. After a few hours I was really tired and not adjusting well to the time so we headed back for the night.

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The next morning we started our day with a breakfast provided and served by the pool and Mike Rowe (of Dirty Jobs fame) speaking to the group. As predicted he was a very good speaker, and he told us a little about how the show got started. He also has a foundation that he started, mikeroweWORKS Foundation, that promotes work ethics and helps people get the money they need to learn a trade to make them successful. After a few sessions we were able to break away from the conference and had a night on our own. We ate dinner at Olives in the Bellagio. To give you an idea of how over-the-top Vegas can be, while looking over the wine menu we saw a bottle of Bordeaux for $50,000. I decided to save my money and get something more reasonable. Dinner was delicious, and it had a great view of the fountains.

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On the last day of the conference, after all of the sessions were completed, we decided to fit in a small bit of pool time before the sun went down. It was really nice to relax without worrying about Owen. In the evening we had a great dinner provided by the conference, and we rocked out to Journey. I have to admit I wasn’t sure what to expect, but Journey was good, and people really got into it. By the time Friday rolled around I was very ready to come home and see my boys again. I’m not sure if I will ever go back to Vegas again, but it was a great experience and I’m glad that I was able to have some time by myself.

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