I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve been to Las Vegas. I went to the old Vegas three times, before the mega-resorts and resort fees and insanely-sized hotels were erected. I vividly remember waiting in the limo with my Dad before we left for the airport. We were watching the cranes and other signs of construction that would eventually completely change The Strip and the city as we knew it. Dad said, “We won’t recognize this place next time we come back”. He didn’t go back, as far as I know, but I did and he was right. It was unrecognizable.
Derek and I have been back several times since we eloped at the Little White Chapel in 2009.
On that trip we stayed at the Luxor, beside Mandalay Bay, at the south end of the strip, nearest the airport. We found ourselves gravitating to Mandalay Bay for the House of Blues and a noodle restaurant we enjoyed. The next couple of times we stayed in Vegas, we used the city as a jumping-off point for a motorcycle trip and a car trip. We stayed at Excalibur, the Flamingo and the Venetian and we’ve visited virtually every hotel on The Strip. When we went back for a longer visit, we chose Mandalay Bay. We found ourselves gravitating to it anyway, so why not make it home base? It was also the Vegas home of the Barrett-Jackson live car auction that Derek loves.
It doesn’t really matter from where a madman decides to launch his attack on innocent people. But when you can picture the room and you know the surrounding area as well as we do, well, it’s perhaps a little more vivid. I don’t want to go back to Las Vegas. Not because I’m scared, but because I don’t want to spend any more of my money in a country that refuses to change anything about the way it behaves. It seems complacent enough to wring its hands and offer “thoughts and prayers” over the murders of 58 innocent people, and then wait until the next one happens so it can offer more thoughts and prayers. There are other countries I don’t want to visit because of their human rights records or the way they treat women. And until something tangible is done by whatever US administration is in power, I can’t support their economy. This isn’t a Democrat versus Republican thing. The Democrats sat on their hands, too. Not taking action is the same as saying, this is okay with us, regardless of what words come out of their mouths. Hey USA, get your shit together, or don’t expect to see me cross the border again.