We got back quite late since we got a bit caught up at the slots at various venues, so after hitting the sack at 6:30 this morning after having some room service of chicken pot pie, french onion soup, and roast chicken, I fiddled with the computer and waited for E to arise about 3pm before heading out for Christmas dinner. It was mexican wild mushroom enchiladas and it was quite brilliant, even if non-traditional and my first time for such food for this holiday. Tonight, Penn & Teller show over at the Rio.
We got up at the, of course, usual hour of 4:30 AM to get ready to meet the tour bus to make it up to the Grand Canyon in Arizona. A small shuttle arrived to pick up folks from various hotels and take us to the quite nice touring bus in which we made our way, first to the Hoover Dam (for a peek from afar) and then to several stops in the canyon area. The whole thing was absolutely breathtaking. I had never imagined it would be so amazing (it was oddly my first time). The joshua trees, the agave, the rocks, the sky, the river – incredible. Looking over the precipice was quite difficult.
Our first stop was Eagle Point, which was interesting for a short time, but we were left there for two hours. To be clear, the temperature was -5 celcius. To be more clear, the place can be walked around in 20 minutes. To be enlightened, there is a gift shop there manned by pushy sales indians. Yes, this is their only income, but for an expensive tour to dump you off in freezing weather, drive the bus away for some vaguely indeterminate amount of time at a place with nothing much but a gift shop is … worthy of an Illinois governor. The group was supposed to be for all ages and no information was given about nececary preparation. There were some older people there who were dressed for going on a tour (like on a heated bus with some brief hop out and take a picture type things), not a trek through the tundra. Yes, when the bus returned they boarded wearing quite a few oddly new winter clothing items which susupiciously bore the logo of the place. I heard one of wail to her friend “oh thank god, we are saved!”
We got up early and went over to Paris where they have Le Village Buffet. It’s about 15 dollars and includes most things you could want. The eggs were not watery, the bacon was not soggy fat, the omlets were cooked properly as were the crepes, the hash browns were not greasy. Their fruit select is restricted to typical American stuff but I suppose that is to be expected. The only nasty thing was the eggs Benedict – I could not even cut it – so it could not even be tried. It was quite great and we left stuffed.
We then went on over to the join the shuttle bus to go over to the outlet mall in Primm. We picked up some nice stuff from Burberry and the Gap for really great prices. The only thing bad about it aside from my being generally kicked into a high state of anxiety by the smell of manufactured clothing type places was some of the other shoppers. Everyone was arguing with the salespeople about why something is 12.99 when they thought it was 11.99. This is all going on in front of me for at least 10 minutes while trying to get my 20$ Burberry shirt, and as the line grew and grew. Argh City!
Anyway, after that we explored the Venetian and I got a gracie card for their casino rewards thing. We wandered around outside after that and did the rewards thing at Harrah’s since they had a promotion going on. Unfortunately it was for new members and they said I went to New Orleans in 2004 so I’m not eligible. Hmph. On well, E got the deal and also a nifty set of winter hat, gloves, and scarf. There is this one cent slot there that if you get a devil in the first, third, and fifth row it does some bonus round stuff (if you do max bet – like 90 cents). We ate at Flavors buffet before heading hope and it was entirely unacceptable … and 21.99.