Christmas Day in Las Vegas!

This morning I wake up at Orleans.  I have a little bit of time to go gambling between Starbucks and checking out.

Orleans now has one HUGE Ultimate X video poker machine.  It is enormous.  I have wanted to play it the entire time I have been here, but it was always taken.  Not today!  I played a bit and doubled $40.  Then I went off to play the nickel Keno game that gave me $942 yesterday.  Some girl was sitting at it, on her cell phone, talking to whoever about “I am already in the casino, hurry up and come meet me!”  Yes please.  Hurry up so youse guys can take off and do whatever and I can have my machine.   I eventually grew tired of losing money while waiting so back to my room I went.

I packed up and got ready to move.  Today’s hotel is my last one of my stay.  Four Queens.  I booked this through Priceline Express Deals.  It is easy to pick out the downtown hotels on here based on resort fees.  Or lack of, like the Four Queens.  So you can pretty much figure out what you are getting.   Three nights, which include Christmas and a weekend came to $180 with tax included.

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Not paying for this room means I do not have to gamble to earn my keep.  In theory, you just about never have to gamble to earn your keep.  Your current stay is based on your past play.  But in every gambler’s mind, there is the whole thing with future offers.  People will happily lose hundreds of dollars to get a comp in a room that is $40/night.  This sounds insane to non-gamblers.  I know.  But what if on that second $100 bill  you win eleventy billion dollars?  That is why gamblers are gamblers.

I decided to take a cab even though I do not like taking cabs.  Mine almost killed me veering across several lanes of traffic when he almost missed the turn to get onto the highway.  Then he told me this was his first week of being a cab driver.  He was really nice and seemed genuinely sorry he almost ended my life.

The cab came to $38 with tip.  I could have taken the bus for free.

I went to check in and for some reason, in my mind it was very early in the morning so I was super grateful to be given a room so early.  I had Strip view, which of course doesn’t change the distance of the Strip:

Four Queens Las Vegas room view

I am raring and ready to go.  I was downtown for one night last weekend and I was not gambling so all my favorite machines are still waiting to be played for the first time on this trip.

First stop: Fremont for Dunkin Donuts iced coffee and SuperTimes Pay video poker!   I love this game and my specific machine so much.   She kept doubling $20 bills.   Then she gave me this:

7s x 8

I normally do not play quarters but since I was doing so well, why not?
quarter 4sI played forEVER here.  Hours and hours and hours.  I made way more than enough to cash in the American Casino Guide coupon that gets you a free buffet for 250 points.  I had no intention of using it for dinner, I don’t particularly want to eat at a buffet on Christmas by myself.   The boothling offered that it was good for dinner tonight though, which was a surprise to me.   That is also good to know since most coupons are not good on holidays.  It was also good she mentioned that it is “good for dinner right now if you hurry” because I had no idea it was dinner time.  I thought it was around 2:00 and it was actually 9:30.

Since I am exhausted, I decide to take advantage of this and go to my room when I am up.  I grab dinner to go from The D’s coffee shop, to use up the last of my comps here and retreat to my room and was asleep by 10:30.

Here was my itinerary that I basically did almost nothing on:

Thursday, December 25, 2014: Merry Christmas!
Breakfast: Orleans coffee shop
Check into Four Queens: 
Dinner: Binions Burger

El Cortez $10 ACG
250 points free buffet Fremont ACG
Plaza 2x points
Gold Coast 15X pennies / 11-7 100 points $5-100
Orleans 15X pennies
Suncoast (swipe) 15X pennies / 11X slots / 6X VP

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: The Big Surprise Win!

Today is not only Christmas Eve, it is also unfortunately day nine of thirteen, my trip is almost over.

I head downstairs at Orleans for breakfast with $25.   Breakfast is actually at Starbucks because I have a $100 gift card.  Starbucks is supposedly only two blocks away from Orleans but this is Las Vegas so that two block walk took about fifteen minutes.

Orleans Las Vegas

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As I am being rung up at Starbucks, I realize I grabbed the wrong sandwich.  I switch it out and I didn’t realize until I got back to my room and looked at the receipt that I was not charged for the one I did get.  If you think that is a win, read on.

I stopped for cigarettes and lost my remaining $15.  I only had $2 left on me and a true degenerate would totally put this in a machine, so I did.  And I won.  Nickle Keno, twenty cent bet.


Can you believe it?  I could not.  My machine did not have sound so once I noticed it was hitting so many balls, I looked to the left of the screen, where it shows you the number of ball hit.  I could not believe seeing I had won 18,800 credits.  This is insane.

I did not have my phone on me because it was in the room charging.  I was in shock.  My flight to China is $1062.  This win means I am only $120 away from it being free.  Well not actually free, but creative accounting free!   Then I get to keep my Christmas bonus which was going to pay for my flight.  Woo!

I went up to my room to tell the internet I won big.  Then I went back down.  I played everything because I could.  I only lost $70 over four hours.  I had so much fun playing everything.  I was not even mad when I tried out some weirdo video poker machine and found out the hard way that max bet was 60 quarters.

I finally take a break because I need a nap.  I still have never showered because I had not planned to be out so long with only $15 to gamble with.

When I woke up, it was getting too dark to do today’s plans which were to walk the Strip and take pictures of everything.   So I thought I would go to Palms.  But then I thought about it and decided that was not the best idea.  Every time I go there, I either win big or lose big.  There is no middle.  So I had the super great idea that I would take the bus to Tropicana for SuperTimes Pay and then to Hooters for Family Guy.  From here I would make my way up the Strip to Flamingo and then hit Palms on my way back.  The logic behind this is that I would be out and about.  Then if I did have a horrible losing streak at Palms, there would be more to my night than just that.

I stopped to get a super huge Mello Yello fountain drink on my way to the bus and was off!

Orleans alligators for Christmas, I am bummed they did not have Santa hats on:

Orleans Las Vegas alligators

I did okay at Tropicana.  One of those times where you cannot lose, but you also do not win.  I got kind of bored after a bit and decided to go.

As I was walking through the Tropicana parking lot to Hooters, some guy was screaming into the phone “I am going to end your life.  I don’t want to live anymore because of you so now you don’t get to live anymore because of me.  I am going to kill you and then kill myself.”  Do doooo dooooooooo look at me walking faster woo hoo yay!  Happy holidays everyone!

I get to Hooters and someone is on Family Guy.  Ugh, I took the bus here for this!  So I play some new fishing themed slot machine and lose on that.  Then finally Family Guy is free.   It was not anywhere near as nice to me as it was the other night.  I guess it knows I am right now not as desperate as I was the other night.  Oh well.

I crossed over to MGM Grand to cash in the twenty cent TITO ticket I had been carrying since I checked out days ago.  They took enough of my money, they cannot have my twenty cents too.

I am tired and no longer feel like going to Palms.   I take the bus back to Orleans.  I go on a losing streak, but it does not bother me at all.   I break for dinner, using the $10 dining credit that came with my room offer.

I went degenerate after dinner, but I am still within budget and I still have my $940 sitting in an envelope, awaiting it’s destiny as my flight to China.  Pretty awesome if you ask me!

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: Spa(ah!) and Leaving My Cosmopolitan Terrace Behind

Tuesday, December 23, 2014: Day Eight of Thirteen

I woke up insanely early today in my comfy Cosmopolitan bed and have what I recognize as an uncontrollable urge to go degenerate gambling.  I want to gamble.  I want to gamble NOW.  I want to put every dollar I own into the pretty machines downstairs.

I have been pretty good for days, but that was only because I messed up so badly on day one that I had a choice to either continue doing things that would send me to the ATM, or to slow down gambling.  I chose the latter but I am CRAVING a binge session on video poker.

The sun isn’t eve up yet and I am FIENDING.   What to do?  I don’t really understand how I came up with this plan, but I decided to: Leave all my money in the room safe, walk to Walgreens across the Strip, get a Diet Pepsi, get $40 cash back and use that and only that to gamble.  It seems like a pretty good idea.  If I win, great.  If I lose, the walk back to the room to get more money might cool me off.  Right?

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I go to Walgreens.  It is only around 4:30 am.  Some guy is shopping, I mean really shopping.  He has a full grocery cart with lots of food and tons of paper utensils and stuff.   He is obviously on line in front of me at the register.  There is one person working because it is 4:30 am and everyone in the world is asleep.   The cashier had the most pathetic attempt at a mohawk I have ever seen.  I had plenty of time standing there to critique it.  It was all floopy and had WAY too much hair product dragging the spikes down.  It looked like he was dipped upside down in a bacon vat.  Hello guy, egg whites.  Try them, they work.  Amateur.

As I sat there growing more annoyed with this entire thing, one of the guy’s 98374234897238 items will not scan.  Price check!   Argh.

Finally, finally, FINALLY it is my turn and Walgreens only lets you get $20 cash back.  I need $40 because that is the plan.  So I instead, find myself at the Walgreens ATM taking out $100.  I could have just done this in the casino.  Or taken it out of my wallet for that matter.  Why am I doing this?   What happened to $40 or bust?  You asshole.

I head back to Cosmopolitan. I am going to only play $40 I swear.  Well it turns out I only played $20 because I hit this:

$200 bucks!  Yay!  Lucky hat go!

cosmopolitan quarter aces

I was so excited about this that I celebrated by spreading $100 of it throughout the casino.  WOO!

I went back to my room and took a shower, got dressed and packed my stuff.  At 7:15, I left my beautiful Cosmopolitan room and checked out.  Again with the long walk to the front desk.  Seriously Cosmo, get those carts the airport has to move people around.  I pick up my deposit, stash my bags and go.

Today I am headed to Red Rock for breakfast (free from MyVegas) and then to the Spa.  I could either take the monorail to the 206 bus to get to Red Rock, or take the SDX bus to the 206.  I opt for the SDX.  I am waiting forever and ever for it to come.  The Deuce comes a few times, but since I have a local bus pass, I cannot ride the Deuce without local ID.   I have never gotten asked for it, since I look like a local.  But I don’t want to get into an altercation should I happen to be asked so I wait for the SDX.  (I am also not allowed to ride the SDX but you do not have to swipe your pass on this bus so I am being an immoral person here.)

I wait.  The SDX never comes.  After about an hour, I get up and look at the bus schedule and see that the SDX does not even start running until 9:00.  I have been here since like 7:45, it is now 8:30.  I am the stupidest person alive and I deserve it as karma for trying to take a bus I am not allowed to take.

So I then go to the monorail, to the 206, to Red Rock and get there with not enough time to eat breakfast.   I stop at the player’s club and get the buffet loaded onto my card.  I grab Starbucks and get back on the 206 to my spa appointment.

Red Rock casinoRed Rock fire pit Las Vegas

Today’s spa treatment was also with a Groupon.  I have a two hour massage scheduled.  I will say this, I was so sure that I was shorted on time because it only felt like half an hour.  But when I looked at the time, I was shocked to see that yes, two hours had passed.   It was so relaxing and wonderful.

Afterwards, I headed back to Red Rock to eat lunch.  As I was waiting to be seated, there was an older couple behind me.  You know, the adorable grandparent type of couple.  Then the woman opens her mouth and tells informs me “If I were at a buffet by myself, I would have to wear a bag over my head because I would be so embarassed.” I did my usual thing when people say really stupid things, and just rolled my eyes and looked away. In retrospect, I should have told her that if I had ever in my entire life not done something because I was too much of a fraidy cat to do it alone, I would have to put a plastic bag over my head and cinch it shut.

Obviously, I travel everywhere alone and didn’t put much of anything into her comment.  But it really bothered me that she felt it was okay to say this.  What if it were not ME she said it to?  What if it were some woman who was venturing out solo for her first time and was not yet fully comfortable with it?  Why would you deliberately go out of your way to make someone feel like shit?   Seriously, asshole move.

It takes me forever and a day to get seated.  Finally I am told that there is a table for me, but I am warned I will be boxed in by kids.  I should have known she wasn’t just telling me that there were kids near me.  This was so much more than just having kids all around me.  This was me being placed inside a seating area where every kid in the vicinity had turned this area into a playground, while their parents just sat and did nothing to stop the climbing, running and screaming.   What was even more I HATE YOU, was that all the adults were clearly done eating and just sat there talking to each other for the entire time I was there.  So you are done eating, there is the world’s longest line outside waiting to be seated, and you are allowing your kids to annoy everyone around you.   You are even worse than that asshole from the line.  Or that asshole with the limp mohawk.  Don’t think I forgot about you, limpy mohawk poser.

After eating, I played a bit.  Since I have (half) my Cosmopolitan win, I can actually play fun things like SuperTimes Pay and Ultimate X.  It has been days.  I play and play and play.  I kept doing that thing where I would reach the end of what I was willing to lose and get one hand that brings you right back.  Fun times at Red Rock hotel and casino!

Once I was ready to fall asleep at my machine, I got up and headed back to Cosmopolitan to get my bags.  Today is moving day to Orleans.

At some point while walking through Cosmopolitan, ninety freaking miles from the Strip to the front desk, I decided to take a cab to Orleans.  I don’t like taking cabs, they are a huge waste to me.  I live in NYC, I am used to taking public transportation everywhere.

That usually results in conversations like this:

Typical Idiot Internet Person: If you can’t afford a cab, you shouldn’t be going to Las Vegas

Me: Who said I cannot AFFORD a cab?

Typical Idiot Internet Person:  You are on vacation, splurge.

Me: I travel at least seventy days a year.  If I splurged $20-$30 every day, that would be $1400-$2100 a year.  (Sometimes I try to be really nice and explain that “I know it is normal to have one vacation a year, and of course it would make sense that you would splurge on your big trip.  Maybe it hadn’t crossed your mind that people travel more than that.)  If I am going to spend that much money traveling, then I am going to spend it on TRAVELING.  Not on cabs.

Typical Idiot Internet Person: Then maybe you should take shorter trips so you can afford a cab.

Me: (Slams head into keyboard)

So here I am taking a cab to Orleans.  Honestly, it wasn’t even about getting to Orleans.  It was about not wanting to walk through the casino ever again.   It seems even bigger than MGM Grand to me.

I check in.   I am here on two nights comped with $10 in dining credit.

Room and view:
Orleans las vegas bedOrleans Las Vegas room viewI dropped off my stuff and went next door to Terribles gas station to get me one of those ginormous fountain sodas and they had Peach Mello Yello!  OMG.  Biggest score of the trip!   It was delicious.  If I ever had to decide between the Orleans and another hotel, I would pick Orleans just so that I could get more ginormous Peach Mello Yello fountain drinks.

Back in the casino, I still had my (half) Cosmopolitan win, that is now my Red Rock win.  I played it all and unfortunately was  unable to exchange it for an Orleans win.

I don’t really understand how, but no matter how many times on this trip I swore I would go to bed early, I always ended up being awake way after midnight.  Tonight is another one of those nights.

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: The Case of the Mysterious Package Is Solved!

Monday, December 22, 2014: Day Seven of Thirteen

Today I wake up insanely early.  I am at Cosmopolitan and I want to go next door to Bellagio to get some pictures of their conservatory done up for Christmas while the masses are still sleeping.  Bonus: I got to watch the sunrise from my terrace:

cosmopolitan terrace sunrise

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I guess 7:00 am is not early enough to visit the Bellagio conservatory because there were people there.  Sigh.

Bellagio Christmas conservatory ceiling snowflakes Bellagio conservatory Christmas penguins Bellagio conservatory Christmas snow globes Bellagio conservatory Christmas trees with actual snow on them Bellagio Las Vegas Christmas conservatory archway Bellagio Las Vegas Christmas conservatory penguins Bellagio Las Vegas conservatory Christmas polar bear on a block of ice Bellagio Las Vegas snow globe They had snow blowing in the archway:
Bellagio Las Vegas Christmas conservatory snow blowingReception:
bellagio las vegas reception desk christmasChihuly ceiling:
bellagio chihuly ceilingI also thought I would get some amazing pictures of Bellagio from outside but the light it just terrible at this time of day. It leaves too many shadows. Who knew?
Caesars Las Vegas Bellagio Las VegasAfter giving up, I went back to my room to drop off my camera and then across the street to Planet Hollywood for breakfast.  I have the Las Vegas Advisor coupon for $10 off a buffet so it was a bargain.   My favorite thing about this buffet is that they have smoothies!

After eating, I got Starbucks and played at Cosmopolitan.  Guess what I did not do?  That’s right, win!

I went back to my room and checked the internet.   Remember last night when I said I saw someone I recognized?   Well ladies and gentlemen, it turns out he left me a package!   So there really is a package for me somewhere!  I try and call the message center, since that is where this all started.  But since I no longer have a written message, I cannot get a human on the phone.  I call the Front Desk, who send me to the Business Center who sends me to the Bell Desk who sends me back to the Front Desk who tries to send me to the Business Center.  This is where I just lost it.  Someone in YOUR hotel called me to tell me I have a package.  Can you please call the message center and find out where the hell that message came from, so that I can maybe talk to the person who left it.  I am on hold forever.

Finally the woman comes back.  “It was at Concierge, it is a Mickey Mouse looking thing?”  Well I don’t know what it is, it was supposed to be a surprise and I obviously haven’t seen it since it has been lost.

FINALLY.  I get my package.  It is a lucky hat!  Here is my cute little stuffed dog modeling it.  He looks unhappy because who wouldn’t be unhappy if they had to travel to Las Vegas in a suitcase and then never even got to gamble?
lucky hatWOO!

After this big whirlwind insanity of “WHERE IS MY PACKAGE” I am ready to wind down and nap.

When I wake up later, I am honestly ready to go right back to bed.  I have been running around for days now and I am in a ridiculously comfortable bed.   I decide to go downstairs and walk next door to Aria (which is like literally next door, but at the same time, is probably not even in the same square mile) to cash in a TITO ticket for $.70 that I have been carrying around for days now.  Damned if I am going to let them keep my $.70!  They already have like a thousand times that of my money.  Oh how I wish I were exaggerating.

I go outside and stop at the Lucky Cat exhibit in the front of Cosmopolitan.  A friend of mine had gotten free slot play here.  I tried and got a horoscope.  Bah.

I continued to Aria, walking along the construction that is the Harmon building being torn down.  I can also see this from my terrace:
cosmopolitan las vegas terrace view of harmonIf you are unfamiliar, this building had construction defects and never opened and needs to be taken down.  This is what it looked like before:

harmon las vegas

As an extra bonus, while searching my computer for that, I also found a picture of it being built:

city center constructionAnd a picture of Cosmopolitan being built!

cosmopolitan las vegas being builtAs I am walking, I notice a whole lot of puke on the pedestrian bridge.  On my way back, I saw someone step in it and then slide in it.   Gross.

I stopped for Starbucks in Crystals mall.  I absofreakinglutely HATE this place.  I hate all malls in general but this one just seems horribly thought out.  There is too much space, which means too much irrelevant walking.   It isn’t enough that it takes twenty minutes to get “next door”, they have to make you walk past wasted space.  Here is a reindeer from the mall:
Crystals reindeer CrystalsI went inside Aria, and thought that maybe instead of cashing in my $.70 TITO, I should gamble it.  So I did one spin on a Buffalo slot and lost it.  I did cash out the remaining $.20.

I walked back to Cosmopolitan and lost some more money there, but that’s okay because I actually love Cosmopolitan and I wish I had been able to give them my Aria money.  But that Aria money is long gone because I am a degenerate.

I went back to my room and decided to stay there on my terrace.  I got to watch the sunset, which was absolutely beautiful.
cosmopolitan las vegas pink sunset over aria

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: Again with the Bus Stop Weirdos, My Fancy Cosmopolitan Terrace and the Case of the Mysterious Package

Sunday, December 21, 2014: Day Six of Thirteen

I am growing more and more tired every day but still cannot sleep. Today’s excuse for getting up is that my room at Main Street Station came with a buffet offer that needs to be used before I check out.  It actually came with two buffets, which worked out great because the credit was actually only good for two regularly priced breakfast buffets.  Since I am here on a Sunday when there is no regular breakfast, only brunch, I would have had to pay the difference.  But while brunch is more than a regular breakfast buffet, it is not more than two breakfast buffets, which is what my credit is for.

I am tempted to play after I eat.  But again, since I paid for this room, I do not have to earn my keep.  Any play I put through a machine is wasted since it will not be covering my room on this trip and I swear I am never coming back so I do not need to play for a future trip. This is the train of thought I need to keep me away from playing and I am happy to have it.

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I go back to my room and pack as I am moving again today, this time to Cosmopolitan. I do not feel like dealing with trying to check in early (Cosmopolitan has a fee for that) so I leave my bags with the Bell Desk and hop on the free shuttle to Sam’s Town to use my $10 free play coupon from Las Vegas Advisor. The shuttle takes fifteen minutes.

sams town las vegas sign

Sam’s Town has an atrium that I just absolutely love. It looks like a beautiful European city and the animatronic animals are so cheesy that you just have to love them. Santa was there taking pictures with kids so I skedaddled out of there to get away.

las vegas sams town atrium sams town atrium las vegas animatronic beaver sams town atrium las vegas full sams town las vegas atrium animatronic bear sams town las vegas atrium sams town las vegas christmas polar bear sams town las vegas christmas tree
I excitedly found four card Cleopatra Keno and turned my $10 freeplay into $35, minus the $10 I spent to activate it as it was a play ten/get ten coupon.

I get some Dunkin Donuts iced coffee, walk next door to the gas station to buy cigarettes and water at off Strip prices and catch the shuttle back downtown. It stops at both Fremont and California. Fremont is first, California is second. I am going to California because it is attached to Main Street Station, where my luggage is. There is a fifteen minute wait before we leave Fremont. I could walk there in five minutes but I am so EXHAUSTED that I am fine with being a lazy slob and waiting out the fifteen minutes for a thirty second drive.

Get my bags, head for the bus to Cosmopolitan. I have a residental route pass, which is not good on the Deuce or SDX bus. I am taking the SDX bus anyway because you do not have to swipe your pass on the bus so no one knows you are an immoral piece of shit who is screwing the system. I was asked to show my pass while boarding and I showed the back of it, which looks like a Strip pass.

The SDX bus stops right outside Cosmopolitan, but the check in is about fifty miles away from the Strip entrance.  I wish you could take a cab through the casino.

I am here on a comp for two nights. I do not deserve this comp. Cosmopolitan is known for sending out feeler offers to people who stopped by for an hour and drop some money. I am one of those people. I have a city room, which is a normal room, no terrace that Cosmopolitan is well known for. After I am handed my keys, I think to double check “It is a smoking room right?” and she says “Yes, you can smoke on your terrace.” I HAVE A TERRACE WHAT?!?

It took me forever to get to my room. So far from the check in, so many people to dodge through. I felt like I was in such a rush, DYING to see my terrace. I open the door and am floored. This room is enormous.
cosmopolitan las vegas bedroom cosmopolitan las vegas kitchenette cosmopolitan las vegas living room cosmopolitan las vegas room closet room AND I HAVE A TERRACE!

cosmopolitan las vegas terracecosmopolitan las vegas terrace viewview night terracecosmopolitan las vegas terrace view of aria

How freaking exciting!

I dropped my stuff off and went downstairs to play.   The casino was PACKED.  I hate packed casinos.  I played some quarter Double Double Bonus video poker and some Cleopatra Keno.  Neither were kind to me.

I went back up to my room and considered spending the night in it, since really, why not?  But I decided I would go back out and do the free play day that I was supposed to do about a week ago and never did.

I walked past the Bellagio to get to Flamingo to catch the bus to Gold Coast.  Again, isn’t Vegas supposed to be dead the week before Christmas?  That walk was so painful with so many people doing that thing where they walk five people wide, holding hands as an entire family so no one can pass.

I got to the Gold Coast and used my play $10 and get $10 play on Keno.  I got up to $20, which is a win.  But I played down to zero, which is a loss.

I walked across the street to take the bus to Tuscany.   Some man started talking to me, he was clearly not right in the head.  He kept going on about “stupid cock sucking piece of shit, fuck this, fuck that, fucking idiot, fucking moron, fucking stupid” over and over and over.  It was kind of like talking to myself.  The only difference being if I were to have eaten half a pound of garlic before talking to me, I could do something to remedy that problem.  With him though, I had no choice but to sit there smelling it.  So gross.

The bus came and I silently begged him to not sit with me and continue our conversation.   I scored big on this one because he did not follow me.

I got off at Tuscany and went inside to use my free play.   The casino is under renovation and most of it was blocked off.  This made it hard to find anything to play.  Finally I settled on a nickel Triple Double Bonus video poker game and lost.  I put in another $20 and lost that too.

Next stop is Ellis Island, with a stop at 7-11 for a coffee.   7-11 has a special where if you buy a coffee, you get a free muffin.   I had to then carry around that muffin because I did not have my messenger bag with me so I had nowhere to stash it.  Damned if I am going to leave behind a free muffin.

Ellis Island has new slot cards so you need to get one before playing.  She could not find me for the longest time so I thought I was going to get a new sign up bonus but she finally did find me.  I then had to go and play $20 to use both the American Casino Guide and Las Vegas Advisor coupons.  I lost it on penny Ultimate X because I could not find any Cleopatra Keno games available.

I go and get my $20 free play and decide to do quarter Double Double Bonus.  I hit sixes and cashed out at $70.  This is the biggest win I have had in so many days.  Pretty sad.

I walked back to Cosmopolitan from Ellis Island.  I thought since I hit the elevators for my room before I near the danger zone, which is where the nickel Ultimate X, nickel SuperTimes Pay, Double Double Bonus quarters with a high progressive and Cleopatra Keno are, that I would be safe.  I thought wrong.  I somehow managed to only lose $20 though.

I do some laundry in the sink before going to bed.  Then I lay down and turn the light off and this is when I notice that the room phone is blinking with a message.  I push the “message” button and a computer tells me I have a written message.  I get transferred to a human being who tells me I have a package at the front desk.   Um, no I cannot possibly?  She insists I do.  I insist I do not.  She tells me the message came at 7-ish AM, I tell her I was not even checked in yet.  She tells me that they assigned my room once I got the package, so that they had a room number to assign it to.

Even though I am in bed and know for damn sure, there is no way I have a package, I decide to go down to the front desk, in my pajamas of course.

I go back and forth between the front desk and the bell desk and neither have a package for me, both keep sending me back to the other one.

While making my way back to my room, I actually spot someone I recognize but have never met.  I do not stop because I am in my pajamas.   When I get back to my room, I send him a message verifying it was him that I snubbed.   The answer will come tomorrow.

Here is my itinerary.  I did all of it except Gold Coast for dinner.  My dinner ended up being my 7-11 muffin.

Sunday, December 21, 2014
Breakfast: Main Street Station free with offer 7-3
Check into Cosmopolitan
Lunch: Gold Coast ACG 200 points = free 8-3

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: Good Thing I Am Not Gambling Today.

Saturday, December 20, 2014: Day Five of Thirteen

Today I am checking out of MGM Grand and moving to Main Street Station. Since I am fully paying for my room at MSS through an Orbitz sale, I do not have to play to earn my keep. Therefore, I have decided to use today to repair my budget by not gambling at all except for using my free play.

I called the Bell Desk at MGM to have my bag stored. Then I try and check out of the room. The televison check out is giving me an error (remember when it told me I was checked out days ago? Clearly this thing needs to be fixed.) However, MGM emailed me a link to check out on my phone. Guess what, doesn’t work and it gives me a 702 area code to call. I am not going to direct dial the MGM Grand so I pick up the phone in my room and dial the front desk. It took all about one ring before I realized that screw this, why am I putting effort in to check out of your malfunctioning hotel? So I leave my room without checking out. Interestingly enough, a few days later I discovered that I was charged for two night’s resort fee, not three.  This probably has to do with the two different room confirmations.  So I guess I owe MGM Grand $28, but damned if I am going to contact them to tell them that.  Serves you right for having ridiculous resort fees to being with.

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Today I am going to Green Valley Ranch for a MyVegas buffet. This takes about an hour on the bus. Who wants to ride the bus that far on vacation? Well, me for example. It keeps me from gambling for the time I am on the bus. See?

On the bus, there is a screaming maniac kid. Not only is it screaming, it keeps pushing the button for the stops so we keep stopping when we do not need to. It’s mother is yelling in its face “CALL THE WAAAAAMBULANCE” because she is a good mother who believes in nurturing her child.

These screams went above and beyond typical screaming kid. At one point the bus driver asks her over the P.A. system if the kid is alright. After a while, I realize that it kind of sounds like Liam of Filip and Liam fame screaming. The difference is that when a child makes these noises, it is nerve grating but when a cute little puppy makes them, it is so adorable. Aw, lookit Liam! He is clearly upset and trying to tell his mommy something. Aw, poor baby, what is it Liam? What’s bothering you? Aw, yes you are just so damn adorable!

That kid? Not so adorable.

We passed Shenandoah, which is Wayne Newton’s ranch.  I thought it was so weird that Wayne Newton lived on a major road and not off in the middle of the desert like I assumed he did.  I thought I would get off the bus on my way back and take pictures but I just really didn’t feel like it when we passed it again.  I don’t like Wayne Newton and I am a horrible blogger who could not be bothered to take a picture of something people might actually find interesting to see.

Green Valley Ranch is really nice.  I would have stayed here this trip (free via MyVegas) if their airport shuttle ran just a little bit later.  My flight landed too late for me to catch it.  Outside they have a sort of little cutesy town thing with shopping going on.  This is as far as I went because the casino was behind me.

Green Valley Ranch Las Vegas town square

Green Valley Ranch Las Vegas casinoI decided to play $10 at GVR, because I am not gambling today. I won $15 but put that back, also because I am not gambling today.

I took the bus back to MGM to grab my bag and head downtown. I missed the WAX bus by a few minutes and the next one is in an hour. I have several other options to get Downtown but I choose to sit and wait for the WAX because I just have no interest in walking to any of my other choices.  That is the thing about Las Vegas.  Nothing is easy if you do not drive and I bet a lot of things are not easy even if you do drive.

Sitting with me at the bus stop are two homeless alcoholics. I know this because they were talking about being both homeless and alcoholics. They started off arguing about $.76. I guess two beers are $2.52 and one only contributed $.52 and the other one had to pay $2. Then $.52 cent guy pulls out a hamburger and $2 guy is instantly furious because if $.52 guy can afford a hamburger, he can afford to pay for the fair half of the beers. But $.52 cent guy did not buy the hamburger. Someone bought it for him last night and he was so drunk he passed out using it as a pillow. When he got woken up soaking wet by sprinklers, he realized he had not only the burger, but a beer as well. Breakfast of champions.

$.52 threw a piece of the bun and a bunch of pigeons flew to grab at it. He then throws another piece further onto Tropicana and says “Let’s see one of them get hit by a car going for it” and a few seconds later, a car indeed barrels into the pigeons. One got hit and feathers flew everywhere but it still flew away so I guess maybe it was okay.  I sat there trying to not react because up to this point, all three of us were sharing a bench and they had pretty much ignored me.  I wasn’t really ready to open myself up to more than just eavesdropping for blog material.

So I bit back my screams of horror and learned a lot more about them by just sitting there. $2 guy has been drunk every day for 20 years, $.52 guy has fifteen years without one day of sobriety except for the occasional lock up. I was curious about how old they were but I had no intentions of joining the conversation.

$.52 cent guy is excited to spend his first New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas because he has heard it is an insane time. This also made me wonder where he was at this time last year. It would seem he just moved to Las Vegas but he is sleeping in places that are not an apartment, so does that count as moving somewhere? I really don’t know.

Eventually the bus came. The driver pulled up far away from the curb. When I went to get on, my bag missed the step up and bumped into the bus. The driver yells at me “Pick up your damn feet when you walk.” Oh so the two homeless alcoholics I just spent the past hour with did nothing to annoy me, but you, the bus driver, you I want to slap.  Good job.

I get to Main Street Station to check in.

The woman behind the counter looks me up and says “you are here for two nights.” No, I am here for one. I wonder what would have happened if I did not correct her. My room is prepaid via Orbitz. I have room 1224, which is a handicapped room as you can tell from the hallway via the two peep holes.

handicapped door

I have only stayed here one time and it was many, many years ago with my mother.  I always intended to come back but my offers come from California next door.  But since I am paying, why not pick the one I wanted to return to?

The room is pretty decent and if you can use the simple zoom function on your camera, you can make it look like you had a gorgeous mountain view right outside your window.

Main Street Station Las Vegas bed Main Street Station Las Vegas roomMain Street Las Vegas room view of mountains

Main Street Station:

Main Street Station Las VegasI am not gambling today so I go out to gamble. I have free play from both the Las Vegas Advisor and the American Casino Guide. While collecting my Four Queens slot play, I find a penny on heads. I then proceed to lose my free play lightening quick.

I lose my whopping $5 The D free play and then I try my Binions free play. I lose it but I have accumulated four points on my card during it. You need five points to get a swipe in their motherlode promotion, so I put in a $5 to get there. Before I know it, I am dealt four Aces. It would have been nice to get the kicker, or to be playing something other than nickels. But it was a win and I was happy to have it.  When I hit five points, I swiped my card at the promo kiosk and I won a deck of cards.  Boo.

I walked back to Main Street Station, losing $10 on some beer themed slot machine because I am not gambling today.

I took a break in the room and then went back out to use my freeplay from Las Vegas Club, Plaza and El Cortez. This was quite the painful experience.

I decide to play at Plaza first, then just load Las Vegas Club and play that on my way back from El Cortez. Because I am not gambling today so I want Las Vegas Club to be last since it is closest to my hotel. Well tied with Plaza but I hate the Plaza and do not want to have to go there twice.

Pretty much every machine in the Plaza has a sign on it that it does not take free play. Finally I find a nickel Keno machine that takes free play. Or that’s what the liar liar pants on fire sticker says. It will not take my free play and now I cannot use it anywhere else because when I try, I am told my account is in use. Back to the player’s club where I am told I need to wait ten minutes for my card to unlock.

I walk out of the Plaza and am waiting for the light to change when some guy says “Smile!” to me. I am for whatever reason, constantly having complete strangers telling me to smile or that “it can’t be that bad!” and I want to scream “WHAT can’t be that bad?” This happens to me ALL. THE. TIME. Excitedly on my way to see my favorite band, hitting Aces with a Kicker and mentally skipping through a casino, winning five thousand dollars, it does not matter what is going on in my life. There will always be a stranger there to tell me to cheer up.

So this guy will not stop, which is how this goes. Every time I have this conversation, it never ends. No matter what I say or do, even if I force a smile, it will never end. The conversation will go on until I walk away. Which I cannot do because the light is red. After several rounds of this guy telling me to smile, me forcing smiling to try and make him stop, him going on and on and on and on and on about fucking smiling, he says “I bet you get this a lot” and I sigh and start to explain that yes, I do. And I go on to tell him I have no idea what to do about it. Strangers keep approaching me telling me to smile, am I supposed to walk around with a fake smile plastered on my face for the benefit of strangers (this is where I stop speaking outloud and continue on the conversation inside my head) and who the hell stands at a don’t walk sign smiling away like a maniac? Seriously, have you ever seen a non-crazy, non-crack head standing at a don’t walk just sign smiling away? NO! So why am I expected to do this? GO AWAY AND LEAVE ME ALONE.

And the guy’s response is “Wow, you are a real bitch” to which my eloquent response was “No YOU suck my dick.” and then then light turned green and I walked.

I get my free play loaded at Las Vegas Club and I get error messages when I go to use it. I just can’t. So I leave.

Slotzilla, Fremont Street’s zip line:


El Cortez. I get $15 from my free play. I head back to Plaza/Las Vegas Club, stopping at Binions to play Cleopatra Keno with my El Cortez win because I am not gambling today.

At Las Vegas Club, I finally get my freeplay to work and I turn $10 into $5. I’ll take it.

Then the Plaza. There are like two machines in this entire casino that take free play. I play a Cleopatra tiles slot just to get it over with and I actually hit a bonus and win $80. Surprise, yay!

I play a bit on my way back to my room and end up bringing back $65 of the $100 I got from my free play. Good thing I am not gambling today or else I would have brought back less.

Here was my itinerary for the day.  I switched out Sunset Station for Green Valley Ranch and did not eat dinner at all, which I did not realize until I typed this out.

Saturday, December 20, 2014
Breakfast: Sunset Station 8-11, 11-4 (MyVegas)
Check into Main Street Station (SDX)
Dinner: California Prime Rib 4-10

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: Every Trip Has an Annoying Day

Thursday, December 19: Day Four of Thirteen

I swear, every trip I take to anywhere always has to have one day where everything goes wrong.  Today is that day.

This morning I wake up at MGM Grand, and go about getting ready to start my day.  This morning’s plans were to go to Green Valley Ranch to use a MyVegas reward, and then off to the spa.

This was all suddenly halted when I realized I did not pack one of my medications.  How did I not realize this until today?  Easy.  I had a pill box leftover from my trip to Seattle a couple of weeks ago that I had been using.  When it came time to refill the box this morning, no meds.

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I don’t know how long this problem is going to take to solve so I first go to the front desk at MGM Grand to check out and back in as one reservation I am on ends today and another starts.  Both were MyVegas redemptions but for some reason, they could not combine them.

Here are some pictures of the MGM lobby decorated for Christmas:

MGM Grand Christmas check in MGM Grand Las Vegas golden lion reception

Getting my meds was a bit of an issue.   I thought it would be easy since I use CVS, which is a chain, and wouldn’t ya know it?  There is a CVS right (not really) across from MGM Grand.

My doctor was not in his office, he was in a different office I do not have a phone number for.  I didn’t have a pen on me so I had to try and memorize the new number which requires using my brain, which I am clearly not capable of.

The pharmacist was not very helpful and was borderline mean to me.  He kept cutting me off and then looked me up and said “You are not due for any refills” before I could even explain that I know this, if you would let me speak…

When I finally got this all settled, my health insurance would not cover the meds because I had just gotten a prescription filled at home.  So instead of $25 for 90 days, I paid $30 for ten pills.

This whole ordeal took too many hours (yes, hours) and now I am running way too late to make my spa appointment.  Of course, booked with a Groupon and non refundable / must cancel 24 hours in advance.  Sure I could call and plead my case, but today is Annoying Day.  It would just be wasting my time.

I went back to my room with a pounding headache.  Partially from being so late taking my medication, partially from frustration, and partly from being starving.   I had the bright idea to go get a cup of coffee from McDonalds and go back to bed.  It was so cold out that I wanted hot coffee, and I do not like hot coffee from Starbucks.

This starts an insane running all over MGM Grand looking for the stupid food court that after half an hour, I never found.  I almost cried at one point, low blood sugar, frustration, terrible day and so on.  I had passed the food court when taking the monorail, why can’t I freaking find the damn thing?   I went to my room completely defeated and went back to bed.

While sleeping, I had a dream that someone had me pinned down and was drilling a hole into my temple.  It was so realistic that I actually jumped awake, smashing my arms at this person to get them off me.   Oh hey.  That thing drilling a hole into my temple is the sound housekeeping is making by pounding on my door so hard that you would think she was being chased by a mass murderer and her only route of escape was through my room.  “HOUSEKEEPING” BAM BAM BAM BAM BAM BAM BAM.  Did she have a fucking baseball bat or a wrecking ball?  How the hell is anyone pounding THAT loud.  Maybe she should do less cleaning of rooms and more Strong Arm competitions.

I yelled at her through the door to go away and she yells back “are you checking out today?”  NO.  I get that because I had a reservation ending today and another one starting today, that my room probably showed up on an outdated list that it would be vacant today.  Can’t she just call the front desk in these instances?  Yes, there was a “do not disturb” sign on my door.  Yes I am still mad.

When I finally woke up, I headed to Red Rock to use a MyVegas reward for Friday night dinner.  Google maps told me to take the WAX bus to the 206 bus.  Google is an asshole.  I should have taken the monorail (free tickets with MyVegas!) to the Sahara Express bus.

I was on the WAX for a while.   Some woman was dead asleep and while we made a turn, her purse tumbles onto the floor, everything spills out of it and her purse keeps traveling until it is under a seat on the opposite side of the bus from her.   Everyone just kind of watched and said nothing.  I did not want to wake her up, the whole act of having to go and wake up a stranger is creepy.  Like do you stand over the stranger and yell “HEY” or do you nudge her awake?  I don’t know you, I don’t want to touch you.   We weren’t making any stops at this point and before the next stop, she woke up on her own and I pointed out where her purse went.  That was my good (not so good) deed of the day.

Red Rock casino:  This place is really nice and fancy.  I stayed here one time and of course my luck meant that the bathroom above me was leaking into my bathroom.  This happened as I was getting ready to check out.  I don’t mean a couple of drops, I mean there was a waterfall in my bathroom.

Redeeming my reward was super easy.  Dinner was really good (and FREE!)

Afterwards, I put $5 into a Cleopatra Keno. got a $50 bonus, and took the money and ran.  I probably would have played a lot more but I needed to get back to MGM Grand to watch the Amazing Race finale because I LOVE TELEVISION.

The bus back was one of the more annoying bus rides of my life.  There was a woman who had never ridden a public bus before, who was loudly and nonstop gushing about how excited she was to be among the common people.  She was so overjoyed in the most annoying way.   She kept talking so loud “I cannot believe IIIIIIIIIIIIII am on a public bus!”  Giggle giggle tee fucking hee!   Then she begins texting people and posting on Facebook all about how “I am riding a public bus!” which we all were kept updated on because she is talking aloud to some guy, reading aloud all the text message responses and comments on her Facebook page.  Things like “Watch out for weird people!” and “Hold onto your purse!”  Shut up.  She asked three times if there was a way to guarantee she could ride a double decker bus later for her ride back.  Yes, you can call and reserve one.  “Really?”  NO.

I had wanted to stop at SLS on my way back to sign up for the player’s club and get some free play but it was nearing Amazing Race time.  I bypassed the casino and hopped on the monorail to go back to MGM Grand.  When I got off the monorail at MGM, I redeemed the rest of my monorail passes from MyVegas.

I head towards my room and ACK my key will not work for me to enter the West Wing.

For those of  you who are not familiar with the West Wing Rooms at MGM, there are two ways to access them.  One is through a door that is nearer (but not really near) the lobby.  The other is all the way by the Strip.  If you are walking through the casino, you pass the Rain Forest Cafe and walk all the way to your right, through a little “lobby” and then through a door.  You need your key to get through the door at both entrances.  Mine is now not working at the one nearest (but not really near) the lobby.   My room is like two feet from the other door but I don’t know if it will work there.  Meanwhile AMAZING RACE LET’S FREAKING GO.  So I make a decision to go to the front desk to get a new key.  Then I have to go alllllllllllllllllllllllllllll through the entire casino to get to my room.  Getting to my hotel room from the monorail which is inside my hotel took me 22 minutes.  I know this because the monorail passes I bought were time stamped.   This is seriously going on my list of reasons why I am not returning to Las Vegas in 2015.

After the Amazing Race ends, I go back out.  I am headed to SLS to get some free play.  I somehow end up getting off the monorail at Westgate (formerly LVH, which was formerly Hilton) to see if they are offering any free play with new sign ups.  They are not as they are using the same player’s club as LVH.

Westgate looking all pretty.  Not sure what that “T” is up top where the Hilton turned LVH logo used to be?

Westgate Las Vegas

I sit down and play anyway.   Nickel Double Double Bonus video poker.  I am in a bank of four machines.  I am on the left.  There is a man next to me and the two machines to the right of him have two people who are facing each other talking and not playing.   But one of them is inserting a TITO ticket into the machine and hitting “cash out” over and over and over and over and over as he is talking.   This is driving me absolutely bat shit crazy.  Every two seconds that stupid cash out noise.  If my machine was multi denomination, I would have upped to quarters to get away faster.

Q: Why didn’t you just cash out and move instead of trying to lose your money faster?


I leave here with less money than I arrived with.   Went outside, walked across the street to the AM/PM and got a super sized fountain Diet Pepsi and walked to SLS.

I signed up for a card and got $5 free play from showing a monorail pass and a mystery amount of free play for being a new sign up.   I believe the amounts vary from $3-500 and I got $6.  I played Cleopatra Keno on a machine that was so frustrating because it was set to  have a couple of seconds of delay between games so I had to keep hitting the button repeatedly…or not be a degenerate gambler who wants to play NOW COME ON ALREADY.  Which do you think I chose?

I lost money here and headed back to MGM Grand.  While riding the monorail my combined aggravation of the entire day was vented by way of me yelling aloud like a crazy person to the automated monorail voice about “SHUT UP” when he would gleefully announce “We are high up over the Las Vegas strip!  Literally, SIXTY FEET OVER THE LAS VEGAS STRIP!”   No way Automated Monorail Voice Thingy, SIXTY FEET?  By gosh by golly.  And here I thought that being on a train 16,640 feet over sea level when I went to Tibet was amazing!   Mind you, the monorail is about as close to being over the Las Vegas Strip as Laughlin is to being on the Las Vegas Strip.  Stupid overly excited automated monorail voice man thingy.

And thus concludes my required day of annoyance for my trip.   Unless you want to add that I also lost fifty bucks playing a Clue slot machine at MGM on my way back to my room.  Okay, sounds fair.  Let’s include that too.  Good night.

OH yeah.  Here was my itinerary for today:

Friday, December 19, 2014
Breakfast: Green Valley Ranch – Free MyVegas
Spa! 12:00 
Dinner:  Red Rock 4-9 MyVegas
Amazing Race Finale

Christmas Trip to Las Vegas: A Wonderful Spa Day and Lots of Family Guy Slot Play

Thursday, December 18, 2014: Day Three of Thirteen

This morning I got up at 7:00 to get my day started.  I planned to eat breakfast at the Bellagio buffet.  I have not eaten here and years and wanted to treat myself.

I walked over from MGM since honestly, it is the quickest way to go.  Public transportation here is awful.  Even when it is available, it takes forever to go ten feet.   I took pictures along the way.

mgm grand lion las vegas Las Vegas Strip from MGM Pedestrian BridgeNew York New York Las Vegas Statue of Liberty

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new york new york las vegas New York New York Las Vegas Brooklyn Bridge

Monte Carlo done up for Christmas, and a random gingerbread house:

Monte Carlo Las Vegas Christmas Monte Carlo gingerbread houseTime for breakfast at Bellagio!  It is odd to me that people always say “how bad can you screw up breakfast” in regards to lower end properties.  Uh, you could have your scrambled eggs be sitting in a huge vat of raw eggs.  Like I saw today at this fancy high end buffet.  Gross.

Everything else was good and would have been more enjoyable if some woman had not been staring at me.  I even stared back and she won the staring contest.  At some point, the boy next to her stood up and blocked her view of me so she craned her neck around him.  I thought okay, maybe there is a Keno board behind me and that is what she is looking at.  I turn around, there is nothing behind me.  I mouth “Fuck you” at her and she turned away.  For a few seconds.  And then turned back.  Sigh.

After breakfast, I played some Cleopatra Keno.  Surprisingly enough, the Bellagio may just have the best paytable I have ever seen for this game.   I ended up cashing out at $75.

Next up is a spa treatment.  When I booked it, I really wanted the reflexology massage.  It was a combo with an Ionic Dexox foot bath.  What is an Ionic Detox foot bath?  Well they hook you up to a machine while your feet are soaking in water and supposedly this machine does a fine job of extracting toxins in your body, through your feet.  The internet tells me this is a hoax, but who cares?  The Reflexology part was what I wanted, it was cheap and bonus!  If this fairytale detox works and takes all the bad luck out of my body, I win!  Literally!

Some pictures I took walking from Bellagio to the bus stop.   The Cromwell, which used to be whatever the hell they renamed the Barbary Coast, which used to be the Barbary Coast:

cromwell las vegasBallys and Paris

I always forget how the world outside of New York exists.   I got off the bus and there is a huge shopping center.  I walked all around it until I realized I was on the wrong side of Flamingo.  In New York, we don’t have all these super wide roadways and shopping malls.   You walk on a sidewalk and can see the numbers without having to go through a ginormous parking lot looking for the numbers on the stores in the Strip mall.  Then you realize that you need to go to the other side of Flamingo, which means crossing ten lanes of traffic.  This is not what I am used to and it is things like this that forever remind me that as much as I want Las Vegas to be a public transport type of city, it just really is not.

Finally, it is spa time!  My Ionic Detox turned the water in the foot bath practically black.  The woman working there told me this is a sign that my body is very toxic and I should probably start getting detoxed on a regular basis.   I decided to not tell her that I saw a demonstration on Youtube of water turning a dark color with no feet in it.  I did enjoy my Reflexology massage, to the point that I pretty much cancelled out the rest of my day to go back to my room and take a nap since I was so relaxed.

My plans had been to go from the spa to Sam’s Town.  The spa was on Flamingo, far west.  So all I had to do was stay on the bus and go far easy.  But my hotel bed was calling so I did that.

When I woke up later on, it was time to start free play day, many hours late.  I started with $50 at MGM Grand that I got from MyVegas.  I quickly turned this into $100 from a combination of nickel SuperTimes Pay and Cleopatra Keno.

After this wonderful go at Free Play Day, I changed up my route and was going to do Hooters next, and then take the bus to Sam’s Town and make my way back from there.   After losing my free play on Cleopatra Keno, I tried a Family Guy slot machine.  It ended up being one of those nights.  You put a $20 into a machine and the next thing you know, many hours have passed and you still have your $20.   I hit every bonus except Stewie’s Progressives.  I had so much fun just sitting there.  The next thing I knew it was midnight and I was starving.  I never did eat lunch or dinner.  I made the executive decision to not continue on free play day, being that at the rate I was going, I would be hitting casinos with the likelihood of the Player’s Club booths being closed.  So back to MGM I went, passing by to the food court next door and getting Wendy’s for dinner.  In Las Vegas.  In a town I have lots of comps and yet somehow overpay for fast food from time to time.   Sorry, not sorry.

Here was my failed itinerary of the day:

Thursday, December 18, 2014
Breakfast: Bellagio 7-11
Spa 11:00
Free Play Day!
Gold Coast $10 LVA 

Tuscany $10 ACG
Ellis Island $10 ACG
Ellis Island $10 LVA

Gold Coast $10 LVA – play 200 points ACG buffet
Sams Town LVA 200 points = free, 4-9
Sam’s Town $10 LVA
MGM Grand $50 MyVegas
Hooters $10 LVA
Hooters $10 ACG

Las Vegas Courtesy of MyVegas Rewards

Las Vegas: December 17, 2014, Day Two of Thirteen

This morning I woke up at Palace Station at 6:33 am. This means I had about four hours sleep after a very exhausting and very long day. This is what Las Vegas does to you. It doesn’t matter than I need about fifty more hours of sleep, there are video poker machines downstairs, who can sleep?

I have a free buffet at Palace Station courtesy of MyVegas. Actually I have two because there is no option to get just one, which is kind of annoying. They are obviously going to track the play to see if the cost of giving away free buffets was recovered via play. My account shows I used two and I only used one. They should consider offering single options.

The buffet was really good and my only complaint is that the entire room reeked of ketchup for some reason.

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After eating, I got a green tea Frappucino and began playing. And kept playing. Played and played and played. I chased the hell out of the quarter progressive Royal that was nearing $1600. I went way over what I should have and lost it all. I kept trying to get myself to go up to the room to nap and I could not get there. I am not sure how much I lost because I do not want to know how much I lost.

Back up to the room in time to pack and check out. I am moving to the MGM Grand today, for three free nights courtesy of MyVegas. Seriously, if you are not playing this game, why are you not playing this game?

I took the bus from Palace Station to SLS and hopped on the monorail. The monorail is also free courtesy of MyVegas. I got two free round trips before they got rid of those and four single ride tickets. The tickets are good for a year so I redeemed them all (except one) and whatever I do not use, expire next December. The one I did not redeem, I am saving for when I visit SLS because they give you $5 free slot play with a current monorail ticket. So I will get one when I am ready to go there so the date is within the 72 hour period.

I don’t even try to check in early at MGM since they now charge for early check in. Screw that. I leave my bags with the Bell Desk and go off, completely exhausted. I make my way over to Aria to do their daily slot tournament, again courtesy of MyVegas. I had every intention of winning the $500 free play. I was in first place a few times and ended up in second. But that was only for my session, there was one after me and some jerk knocked me out of second and another jerk knocked me out of third. How rude.

Look how pretty Aria is:Aria ChristmasAria bird chairs aria waterfall AriaMy next stop is Bellagio where I have a free dinner buffet courtesy of MyVegas. Today I am clearly the poster child for MyVegas.

I had a slight almost-problem when redeeming my Bellagio buffet.   The one I redeemed required you to be staying at an MGM property, which I am.  But since I had not checked in yet, I did not have a room number and I almost could not redeem it.  This didn’t even occur to me before I got there and once she told me this, it made perfect sense. I was about to cry because I was so tired.  I did not want to walk back to MGM and then back to Bellagio.  And of course, today is the last day of my trip I can use this buffet as the black out dates start tomorrow. The boothling took pity on me and spoke to a manager who allowed me to show my room confirmation as proof I was staying there.  I am eternally grateful for this.

Dinner was very good. At one point a 389646378 member family got seated next to me. There was plenty of space between my table and theirs. One of the little girls plops down right next to me and sits on my camera bag. I actually had to say “You are sitting on my camera” before she gave me a dirty look and got up. I just love people so much.

I ended up taking the monorail back to MGM. The walk to the monorail was longer than the walk to MGM Grand but I am so so so tired and just not in the mood to deal with the Strip. On the Bellagio side, the sidewalks have been reconfigured so you are forced to walk into Aria to get past it. On the Ballys side, you are forced to walk through a strip mall. I hate this so much. So I walked fifty miles to take the monorail, again free courtesy of MyVegas.

I check in and am given room 555 on the third floor of the West Wing. I got so lost looking for it, that I even had to go back to the front desk to get help.

I am not anything resembling a princess who needs a fancy princess room.  The West Wing rooms have quirks. They are small, the window is located behind the bed so it is impossible to look out of, the bathroom is a whole other thing. This thing was designed specifically to make people talk about it, which is like free advertising. When you walk into the room, you are inside the bathroom. The bathroom has no walls, you are just inside it when you walk into the room. Here is the room door, to the right is a wall with a hook to hang your wet towel, next to that is a toilet behind frosted glass.  The shower is also behind a frosted glass door, to the right of the toilet (the shower didn’t make it into the picture) and on the right side of this picture is the sink.

See?  All at the entrance to the room. MGM Grand West Wing bathroom inside door The bathroom is also mint toothpaste themed. MGM Grand West Wing bathroom In the room itself, the panel underneath the television was removed so all the wires and electronics were exposed. mgm The closet door was the worst because it would not stay shut. It has an automatic light inside when it opens so when it was always open, the light would come into the room. I don’t know why I do not have a picture of it, but the closet door is enormous.  It goes all the way to the ceiling and is the same width as the entertainment center.  So when there is light around the edges, there is a lot of edge. It was such a heavy door that my suitcase leaned up against it was not heavy enough to keep it closed.

Yes, I could have called the front desk and requested a new room, no I did not.

Bed: bed Room view: room viewIt is now near 8:00 so I turn on the television to watch Survivor and the television tells me “You are successfully checked out” and turns off. Please television, not now. I would like to thank Survivor for existing because it kept me in my room for three hours. I was totally nodding off and had to actually stand up to not fall asleep. As it is, I missed the last fifteen minutes of the reunion. It honestly makes you wonder how I handle anything in my lifestyle if I cannot handle staying awake for television while on vacation.

This was my itinerary for today, I did everything except the free play at SLS.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Breakfast: Palace Station 7-11, free via MyVegas
SLS – new sign up free play
Check into MGM Grand

Aria Slot Tournament


Bellagio buffet 3:30 – 10:00, free via MyVegas
Survivor Finale

And Another Christmas Trip to Las Vegas Begins!


I always leave for Las Vegas from work, so that I don’t waste a night at home when I could be in Vegas that much earlier.  As always, I spent that last day at work all kinds of crabby and just dying to go.

I cannot believe I am actually going to say this but my flight left on time.  Wait, what?  Yes, it left on time.  I have never had an after work flight to Vegas do this, not ever.  So that was a nice kick off.

When it came time to board, they first called for people who need assistance or have small kids.  Zero people went to the gate.  Then first class, zero people went to the gate.  Then business class, about five people went to the gate.  Then it was my turn!  The flight was mostly empty which is something I have not seen in so long.  My flights to Vegas are usually empty due to the time I go, but last year I went during Thanksgiving and missed out on the empty flight the week before Christmas.

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Delta’s in flight entertainment is usually limited to movies, no live television.   This trip we didn’t even have movie options because we did not have individual television screens.  Dammit, I totally wanted to spend another six hours watching Pearl Jam Twenty on a Delta flight, since that is pretty much the only free movie they offer that I want to see.  Or did want to see.  I kind of got sick of it after having it on repeat for seventeen hours each way to China and back earlier this year.

The movie was some movie, Dolphin something, a kid’s movie.  I have a real knack for getting kid’s movies played on my Vegas flights.  I am sorry everyone on my flight, I jinxed you all.

For some extremely aggravating reason, all the podcasts I downloaded onto my phone would not play.  I had been saving these specifically to kill time on my flight.  So I spent the entire flight doing nothing other than staring into space.

We arrive a full 45 minutes early.  This is great for me because I am staying at Palace Station.  They have a free airport shuttle.  One leaves at 10:30 and the next is at midnight.  My flight was supposed to arrive at 9:45 so I was sure I would miss the 10:30 one, anticipating being late.

The shuttle for Palace Station leaves from Ground Zero, gates 21-23.  These gates have signs that say they are reserved for buses and the public buses do stop there.  So I was worried the gates had been changed but there at 10:30 was the shuttle.   We pull out of the parking area and it is POURING.  Monsoon like rain.  I get so excited, I always win when it is raining in Las Vegas.

I check in, one night on a MyVegas comp.  Read here for more information about that.

I would have preferred using the night for either Red Rock or Green Valley Ranch, but those two have their last airport shuttles at 9:00 so that would not have worked for me.

palace station las vegas

I get room 21001, top floor.  My view is of the parking lot.Palace Station Las Vegas room view

My room is really nice.  I have only stayed here once before and I was in a courtyard room.  I might have been this time too had I not been so exhausted and remembered to ask for the OJ Simpson room.

palace station beds

I glance at the clock before I went out and it was 11:11, make a wish!

I went next door to 7-11 for some coffee.  The week before I left, I ended up in the brand new 7-11 by my apartment every night for a large coffee and I was craving  it by this point.  They do not have decaf made, they make me a fresh pot.  This takes a while and I am treated to an employee’s long thoughts on caffeine as I am waiting.  Very nice girl, but I am exhausted and i need to gamble let’s GO.

By the time I get back to the casino, I am allowed to play $70 before bed.  I spot a progressive quarter Double Double Bonus video poker game, the Royal is $1568.  I played for a very long time as the machine kept dealing me three of a kinds (but not connecting on any of them.)

I went to eat dinner and got sucked into playing video poker with a WHEEL just because I saw video poker with a WHEEL!  Lost.  Ultimate X, lost.  Supertimes Pay, lost.  Hey, wasn’t I going to eat?

I went to the Grand Cafe and had a late night special burger.  The only thing special about it was the price.  But I wasn’t exactly out looking for a great meal.

After eating I play one last $20 and go to bed with my first night’s budget left behind in the casino.  Sigh.

I got back to my room at 2:00.  So I was out for three hours, and only lost $60 (I left with $70, ten went to dinner.)   As much as I love nights like that, where your play lasts, I do wish it had happened on any night I was not falling asleep as I was playing.  There were times I was trying to hold cards on the draw.  Idiot is as idiot does.