Vegas, Baby!

Want to know my dirty little secret?

I’m a Vegas junkie. I arrived here for the second time in the same year thinking I have seen it all and nothing can impress me anymore but shortly I have discovered that a lifetime isn’t enough to learn all of Las Vegas’s secrets. We all heard about the Sin City, its crazy night life and debauchery and thinking about it overall, doesn’t even seem like my kind of place. I’m not the dance-on-tables and drink-until-dawn kind of girl {anymore, at least} and with that being said, I really want to know what is it that bounded my heart so tightly to this place?

It’s early morning in the city and the traffic is crawling along the strip like I am moving in slow motion. I walked this road through intense heat a couple of months ago and now I find myself warming my hands on a cup of Starbucks cappuccino.  I press my face against the window of the taxi and while ooo’ing and arrrrh’ing at the already familiar sites it feels like I am driven into a completely different world.

On the sidewalk, I see locals heading to and from work after shift changes, there’s also the occasional group of girls carrying their high heels and wearing clothes from the night before, while a few runners get their exercise in for the day. The streets are great for people watching.  You will find all sort of energy and today I am so happy that I don’t see the guy who hands out the fliers for escorts. (Is there any job in the world which requires less skill?)

You can really walk down the street and mingle with the rich and the poor. The ultra high end casinos are open to the public so it is not uncommon to see people wearing “haters kiss my ass” t-shirts walking past a Prada store. In fact there is a law in Nevada that all gaming tables must be open to the public, so no matter how you look like or how rich you are you can’t hide in a private room to gamble were the poli guys in the blue can’t see you.

Mostly I ended up seeing Las Vegas in its natural state, at least as natural as it gets. I’m able to look beyond the fancy hotels,  dancing fountains, flashing lights, and gaudy look-at-me-now attractions. If you go to a place in different seasons and different time of the day, you just feel it different. Coming back here in the winter time, early morning and not at night made the big difference. I see Vegas without the thick, black eyeliner, false eyelashes, red lipstick, and teased bouffant hair. Gone are the stockings, mini skirts and hoochie-mamma stripper clothes. I still notice things like Love Ranch Cathouse and a sign advertising the “Loosest Sluts in Town” but no drama.

Our suite at the Caesar’s, looking out over the mesmerizing Vegas Strip takes your breath away… I throw my bags next to the window and…

Let’s get real now. There is something in Vegas that drives me crazy, and to be more specifically, it’s called Texas Holdem Poker Room. I’ve laid my money down in many different cities and even other countries, but nothing beats classic Vegas. The smell of the felt, the crispness of the cards, the always friendly dealers looking for a nice tip and the clink of the chips makes my heart race like few other things. It’s intoxicating. Highly addictive. The ding-ding of slot machines in the distance, the squeals delight, and the all-to-familiar sound of “cocktails” by the circling waitresses just adds to the atmosphere.

Music, magic, comedy, drama, Broadway productions – we have it all right here in this real live city. Right here in Nevada!

If you are still not convinced take a look at the Venetian that will probably send you searching on your iPhone for flights on United. Looking for art? Let’s have a meal at Picasso’s in the Bellagio. It is a five star restaurant with original Picasso paintings on the walls. A meal for two people with wine will probably be over $500 so how about some Thai food. It’s everywhere; very cheap and you’ll actually be served the authentic version, not the American-style adaptation.

With so many places in the world that I’ve yet to see, I rarely visit a place twice. But there’s just something about Las Vegas that draws me in like a moth to a flame. It really is a happy but very wild place. You can look to your left and there’s a guy getting married to Marilyn Monroe and to the right there is some old lady sticking quarters into a slot machine for hours.

Vegas, baby! The big temptress always waiting for us to fall into its glitter-covered arms…

♥ Cristina

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Cristina Mitu

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