One of my goals for 2017 is to write more blog posts about travel, living abroad, and just general life goings on. But mainly just to write.
Last year, I lost my motivation, and didn’t write anything for a long time. I procrastinated too much, and probably would have been more likely to spend four hours watching cat videos on YouTube, than sit down and put words together that made actual sense.
But I enjoy writing. And without sounding like an absolute loser, it gives me something to focus on when I’m at home all day, and it’s a great way to connect with other people when you can sometimes feel somewhat removed.
Plus it’s minus 9 degrees C outside right now, so I ain’t leaving this flat until the Honeymoon.
In May last year, we went on the most incredible road trip through the South West of America. We began our trip in Vegas, and then onto Utah and Arizona, with a few stops along the way. The second half of this trip was by far the best part, the scenery was so beautiful and picturesque, that I felt like I was walking through a postcard. And for a girl who struggles to give compliments past saying “really good”, I could not stop myself from mouthing “wow” every five steps.
But that’s for the next blog post. Lets talk about the circus that is Vegas first.
I always think of Vegas and New York as two of the main places that most people want to visit in America. I understand the NYC fascination, but Vegas? Nah, no thanks, not for me. I’ll just have a nap by the pool whilst you go do your thing, said GRANDMA. I’m just not into it. But I knew it was something I had, and kinda wanted, to tick off my list whilst in the US.
We began our trip with a long weekend in Vegas, once Ian was finished with a work conference over there. Although the original plan was for me to meet Ian there at the end of his work conference, I ended up joining him for the whole week. This was mostly because I wasn’t having the best time in America at the beginning of last year, or feeling great in myself, so without supervision, I may have booked a flight right back home.
Whilst Ian was working, I hung out in the sunshine, explored the nearby hotels and casinos, and perused awkwardly around designer shops I had no intention of buying from. At this point of the trip, I wasn’t all that in love with Vegas. I still didn’t get it. The hotel we were in wasn’t great, there were too many people, my clothes stank of smoke from the casinos, and Starbucks tried to charge me $7 for a water.
However, once Ian’s conference was over, we moved on to stay at The Venetian for two nights, and I started seeing Vegas for what it really is. The luxury suite, the architecture, the indoor Grand Canal, the elegant boutiques, the TEN pools, and the phone next to the toilet. Everything about it screamed Vegas.
Blogging about this trip eight months later, I don’t have all the details fresh in my mind, however one thing I do remember is the food. Oh boy, the food.
If you are looking for a real American style burger or slab of steak, Vegas has your back. More specifically, Gordon Ramsey has your back.
There were three GR restaurants (that we saw) along the main strip of Vegas, and the food at each one was perfect. We even had a traditional British steak pie, and a sticky toffee pudding at the GR Pub and Grill, which might actually be the best we’ve ever had. Soz England. We also had what may have been the best burger we have ever had in America at GR BurGR. And for an extra special, high end steak, GR Steak was amazing.
In between eating, and pretending our swanky hotel room was our actual home, I played roulette, Ian played Blackjack, we won and lost money, and drank a lot of gin.
The two main things I do remember from Vegas was New York, New York Hotel and Casino being my favourite casino. I just liked the look and atmosphere, they had a lot of good bars and places to eat, and it didn’t smell of smoke. Visiting Fremont Street in Old Vegas was also one of my favourite nights, starting with the light show in the photo above, and spending the evening in old school casinos, it was just good fun. On a different night we also went to see a Penn and Teller show, which I would definitely recommend.
However the best part of Vegas for me was getting to see all of Ian’s colleagues again. It was nice to just be around a group of friends, and meet new people. And having a quick refresh of the quirks, and humour from back home, always presses my reset button ready for America.
I can’t say Vegas has made my top three places to go in America, but I did enjoy it. And I can now say that I do get it. You can make Vegas what you want it be. If you want a wild week with your friends, Vegas is the place to go. If you want a bit of luxury, Vegas can provide it. And if you want to lay by the pool, it has that too.
But most importantly I didn’t come back with a face tattoo, or vomit down myself. That was the second half of the trip thanks to altitude sickness**, but just look at that view (insert heart emoji here).
**I didn’t actually vomit down myself, but the altitude sickness was most definitely the real deal!