20.08.2016 - 20.08.2016
Saturday 20th August
It was nice waking up in a proper bed this morning, although I was still wide awake at 6.30, I had to pack up all my stuff again because Lisanne was leaving today so I'm going to be sharing with Rhiannon tonight. I decided to keep some stuff out and do a bit of laundry, it turns out I've only worn about half the stuff I've brought, all my nice / civilised stuff (half my case) is all still unworn. It cost me $25 for the hotel to wash my clothes - eek! I nearly didn't bother but couldn't be bothered messing about going to the nearest outside laundrette which was a few miles out of the city centre and it really needed doing.
We had a free day today which meant Kelsey wasn't organising us (or looking after us), I'd decided I wanted to go on the New York New York Rollercoaster and the stratosphere rides and asked the others if they fancied it, some did so we arranged to meet in reception at 10.30, some turned up, some didn't so the ones there set off. Talking about the hotel reception, the entire time we were there there was a convention in for anime - some Japanese cartoon things and there were hundred of people dressed up as characters, some hadn't made much effort but others must have spent hours getting ready, funnily Molly is petrified of stuff like that and had to move every time she saw one.
It turns out Calvin Harris was djing in one of the hotels last night, wish id known I'd've tried to get tickets.
The ones who'd made it to reception set off walking to New York New York which took about an hour, this place is vast and the strip is a very busy main road which you can't just cross like you would a normal road, you've got to cross using bridges - the bridges generally start and finish in shopping centres! The ones who hadn't met us in reception got there before us because the clever buggers had got a cab, why didn't we think if that?!? New York New York was huge, just like Paris has been, loads of shops and restaurants and a huge casino - this is the hotel I'm staying when I come back - woop woop, I think I'm going to enjoy it here! The Rollercoaster was good fun but a bit of a bone shaker, it took us past the Empire State Building, Chrysler building and the Statue of Liberty - well replicas of the real thing - mad just mad!
We'd not had breakfast before we left so were a bit peckish when we'd finished so called at the nearest food place - Nathan's, a pizza and hot dog diner inside the hotel, there weren't many veggie options so I had...... A slice of Mushroom pizza (for last nights supper and this mornings breakfast - oops!) and waffle fries (which weren't very nice)! After food, we had to say goodbye to my lovely roomie / tent mate / hiking mate Lisanne, she was heading for a last wander and then off to the airport.
The rest of us decided to go to the Venetian for a gondola ride. The Venetian is a hotel casino and basically a real indoor city, with a painted sky- complete with shops, restaurants and a canal (on the second floor?!), a real canal where you can have a gondola ride!! This place is mad and these hotels must have cost billions to build, it's amazing. I went in the gondola with Emily, Caitlin and Michelle and we got the campest gondolier (is that what they're called - the bloke pushing the boat with his stick) ever, who loved doing elaborate poses for the camera. We'd already noticed on the boats we'd seen as we were waiting that the gondoliers sang but we didn't know if it was all of them - it was which had us all giggling all the way round the canal, we even got our man to sing happy birthday to Emily. The ride lasted about 15 mins and was good fun, we even saw a couple getting married on one of the boats - with just them, the registrar and the gondolier which was quite cute.
When we'd gone, me and Emily decided to head to stratosphere to go on the rides there - they are at the top,of the building - 921 feet above the Strip! There's a bit of a Rollercoaster type thing, which wasn't as good as I was expecting, you sit in a Rollercoaster type seat which runs along a small piece of track over the edge of the building, the track is also a bit if a seesaw, the best seats are obviously the front ones, the ones behind don't get the same view, it would be much better if everybody had a front seat view (ie if the seats were at the side of each other rather than behind), the second ride is a spinny claw like thing which dangles you over the edge and then spins round, I'm not a fan of spinny things generally cos they make me a bit travel sick but I did enjoy this mainly cos of the height and the views, the third ride is where you sit on a row of seats and it shoots you up in the air which was cool but I was disappointed this one didn't last longer - especially as there was only us three on it - get me, Rollercoaster connoisseur, I'm never satisfied ha ha! There is another adrenaline fuelled thing on the stratosphere - called the sky jump, it looks like a bungie jump but is really a vertical zip wire, it looks pretty awesome so I think I might do that when I come back next week,
Em decided she fancied an aft at the side of the pool so got a cab and headed back, I'd got more exploring to do so decided to wander back down the strip and call into whatever I passed. Before I left the stratosphere though I decided to have a look round the casino and spotted a wizard of Oz slot machine so decided to put a few dollars in, as I sat down a lady asked if I wanted a drink so I ordered a voddy and coke and put seven dollars in the machine - I didn't win a bean and the waitress woman didn't bring my drink. As I was loitering (waiting for the drink) a woman came up and asked me if I'd done on the machine cos she wanted a go, I let her go on but didn't hang around to see if she won any of my money back, I did tell her to keep an eye out for the drinks lady and that the voddy and coke was hers if she wanted it.
I headed off out and started my stroll down the Strip - blimey it's a long way! First off I called in circus circus, I imagine it was grand in it's time but compared to some of the other hotels it's very tired and dated. There are circus acts on throughout the day but I'd just missed them and didn't want to hang about for an hour til the next ones. I walked past some of the little wedding chapels, I didn't see any weddings going on but I did see a couple who had just got married and were having some photos taking and I shouted congratulations to them. Between stratosphere and the next big hotels there's a bit of a gap where a hotel has been demolished and here is just the hugest pile of tangled metal, there's also a big blue hotel which I'm not sure if it's new and almost complete and been abandoned or if it's not new but has still been abandoned, it looks a bit sad. There's quite a few homeless people but they are no hassle and don't even bother asking for anything.
My poor flip flop clad feet were starting to ache by this point and I was a bit peckish so decided to find myself some tea. Trip advisor told me there was a veggie place near by but it turned out it was closing in five minutes so I found an oriental place called PF Changs at planet Holliwood, the restaurant was huge and packed but they managed to find me a table for one. the food was yummy- veggie spring roll and tofu Buddhas delight - but the waiter was awful, I'm not sure if it was because I was on my own but he was super helpful to everyone else around me and hardly gave me the time of day - he banged my glass of water down on the table so hard it splashed over the side, he didn't mop it up! I asked if he could help with my chopsticks (those stupid cheap ones you have to snap apart) I'd already broken two sets and he was very snarky about it. As I was finishing eating he asked if I wanted another glass of wine, I said yes please and he brought me it in a plastic glass so I could walk home with it - I'd have preferred it in a proper glass to drink in the restaurant but couldn't be bothered saying anything so I walked out of the restaurant and back to my hotel sipping wine out of a plastic cup I felt like a bit of an alki, but it's normal here a ha ha! Back at the hotel it was time to say goodbye to lovely Claire - that's both the other newbies who started the trip with me gone now - boo hoo! I hate the saying goodbye bit. I'm going to be sharing with Rhiannon now!
My poor feet were throbbing, it turns out me and my super comfy flip flops have walked 12 miles so I didn't hang about in going to bed.
Steps: 29,500 / 12.2 miles.