Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Las Vegas Adventure - Day 7 - Coming Home

[Composed 12/1/2019]

Thankfully, everything about our travel day today was uneventful. We had no issues at the airports, two easy flights and I even managed to watch a couple of fun movies. Men In Black: International was as silly and predictable as I expected. But I found Stuber exceeded expectations. Perhaps it was the sleep deprivation from getting up at 3am, or maybe it was the altitude, but I found the movie funny, touching and tons of fun to watch. Predictable, sure? But that didn't seem to take away from my enjoyment of it. I did get a kick out of the fact that both movies starred Kumail Nanjiani, and he was by far the best character in Men in Black: International.

So we're back home, safe and sound. Here's a few final reflections on Vegas:

  • We stayed at the MGM Signature, which is a non-smoking, all suites hotel that doesn't have any gaming. What it does have is an indoor walkway to the MGM Grand, which does have gaming and is located on the Strip. One major factor in our trip was the cruddy weather: rain and cold temps. Having a walkway to the Strip was ideal. I'm assuming this walkway is just as handy when it's 110°F out. This hotel was an absolute winner.
  • Vegas is one of the few places in the US where smoking is still an issue. As far as I can tell, all of the casinos allow smoking, which just blows my mind. The Vegas style casinos around the DC area do just fine without allowing smoking, but this trend just hasn't hit Vegas yet. Yuck.
  • I'd hope that Vegas would be a gateway to great hiking, and it was. If you need to choose a single hiking area to visit, I suppose you should select Valley of Fire. But there are so many hiking opportunities around, it would be a shame to choose only one.
  • The food options in Vegas were great: we had plentiful vegetarian *and* Kosher options. These required a 15 to 30 minute drive off the Strip, but were totally worth it.
  • Perhaps it was the cold weather, but the city had less of a Sin City feel to it. Years ago we spent 24 hours in Vegas, and while entertaining it definitely gave me a vibe of being a place where you could indulge in whatever vice you wanted to guilt free. That Vegas is probably still there, but the impression I took away this trip is one of a more complete city. I could see bringing our nieces and nephew here to enjoy the hiking, food and supposedly kid friendly entertainment. Perhaps when it's warmer, and people are drinking more and wearing less, I'll feel differently about a family vacay to Vegas.

Definitely good times!

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