In 1995, while living in San Francisco, we drove to Las Vegas and not down Highway 5 either. We took our time and the scenic route. Northeast to Reno and Lake Tahoe (including a stop at the Ponderosa, Bonanza fans!), south through Yosemite (where Fiona took her first steps and was almost kidnapped by some adoring Asian woman), through several quaint gold rush towns (including Bodie, the coolest ghost town evah!), along Highway 49. We visited Sequoia and Kings Canyon and spent Thanksgiving in Bakersfield (sounds like a Dwight Yoakum song) and headed east to LV but not before a detour through Death Valley. Finally, after about 900 miles of driving, we were in Vegas. The drive was all a bit Hunter S. Thompson-esque, without the narcotics and a lawyer.
|Vegas Vic - the famous neon cowboy across from the Golden Nugget|
Fast forward to 2013 and North Las Vegas is a bit of a relic and all the action, glitz and gaudiness is a few miles further south on the Strip. This time I went for a convention and stayed for two nights at the Paris. The city was hopping, although there was nothing major going on. It was just Vegas being Vegas. The sidewalks were thronged early and late. Irony of ironies, when we decided to lose a few bucks, we went to the Golden Nugget. This area now has a roof and the streets are closed to pedestrian traffic only. Vegas Vic is still there but he no longer waves. (I believe Vic to be a cousin of Big Tex back in Dallas, I did not mention arson...).
|Gustav would be impressed|