Vegas! (The exclamation point seems pretty much mandatory.) I got here at about one, after a couple of hours of driving across the desert. It sounds bad, but it was actually really pretty, with the wildflowers out in force. I couldn’t see them to closely, since I was doing about eighty, but I could look over out of my window and see whole patches of countryside that were just yellow. (Pictures to follow soon.)
The Stratosphere seems like a nice enough place; definitely a bit more downmarket than some of the other hotels on the Strip, but I guess that’s what you get for fifty-nine dollars a night. Once I checked in I went on a little excursion, to see what I could see. I took the monorail to the main part of the Strip and spent the afternoon wandering around, shopping and taking in all the tacky. Sadly, in four hours I only made it about halfway along, but I did see the Grand Canal (conveniently indoors and located on the second floor- the fact that the gondoliers could actually sing was a nice surprise), an artificial Eiffel Tower studded with fake rivet heads and the answer to the question: What would happen if the Roman Empire had survived to build shopping malls? I also got my toenails done, so it was a pretty good day. I still haven’t gambled yet, though.