The land of "plenty"

Or, more fittingly, the land of too much of everything. Here in the middle of the desert are dozens of mega-hotels with 2000+ rooms each, enormous buffets on every corner, neon lights and spot lights and glowing slot machines… The pure amount of consumption that happens in Las Vegas is absolutely insane. On our trip to the Grand Canyon we met a couple from New Zealand who said they just can’t believe “America.” They commented that they were not able to find any place that wasn’t stuffed with people and that Americans seem to consume so much. The said there is nothing in New Zealand like Vegas and there, for entertainment, most people do outdoor activities like kayaking and hiking. Mex and I tried to explain that Vegas was not the city to judge America by. However, we started talking about it over dinner yesterday and decided maybe the Zealanders weren’t so far off. 

Bellagio flower display

In Mexico, where water is scarce (which is in almost the entire country) the use is strictly limited on a daily basis. You have one hour to pump as much as possible into your water holding tank. In the US, we see desert and decide to build one of the most energy-sucking, water-consuming cities in the country there. Why? Maybe gambling and girls were the only thing that could get people to visit this dry, wickedly hot area. Now there are dance clubs, “gentlemen’s and ladies clubs”, and free drinks while you gamble. I must admit that Mex and I did take advantage of the last one but penny machine hopping and pretending to gamble until the drink lady came our way. Of course, by the third margarita I really did put my $5 in the machine but luckily 500 pennies last a long time…

It will be a long time before we come to Vegas again (don’t tell my husband I said that!). He does love it with all the lights and things to do and I like to come here because it makes him happy. We usually go to shows like Cirque de Soleil or comedy shows but we decided to spend our “fun” money on the Grand Canyon excursion instead this time. It was a good choice since we both had wanted to see it for years. The business trip was worth it and I wish I was attending the classes the rest of this week but unfortunately I didn’t have time in my schedule. We just are not dance or clubbing or drinking people so Vegas does have a limited appeal. It is amazing to see the large size of the casinos and the fact that construction keeps going on. And the shopping would be great if I knew (or cared) anything about fashion. Everything from Jimmy Choo shoes, Armani suits, and $4000 prada purses! You can walk around for hours just looking at everything there is to see and being amazed, overwhelmed and slightly disgusted. Oh well… We just ran in to our friend Karla at the airport here in Vegas. Small world!

A few follow up notes: There were a ton of people selling time shares to condos in Vegas. We were attacked at the entrance to every hotel and casino with the question “Are you two married?” finally, after the 4th day I said to one of them, “Yes, but not to each other.” He didn’t really have a response to that and Mex and I walked away without being bothered. Totally annoying!
One last thing… Our hotel Excalibur is home to the “Thunder from Down Under” show featuring Australia’s hottest male exports. I couldn’t quite convince my husband to go though =)

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Filed under Mexico, Minnesota vs. Mexico, Minnesotan/American culture, Travel outside MN and Mexico

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