December 31, 2008 – New Year’s Eve on the Las Vegas Strip

Note:  This is an older Las Vegas trip report that I am posting for the entertainment of Las Vegas addicts and anyone else who loves fun.  It was written back in 2008.  Most of this information is now outdated and some places mentioned no longer exist.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 – Day Twenty of Twenty One – Last Full Day!

Today I wake up at around 9-ish at the Sahara.  I break my “play until you have ZERO cash left and then go to the ATM” rule and take out $300. I’m still under budget. I played $25 and lost. Come ON it’s my last full day.

I attempted to eat breakfast  at the Caravan Café, but the line is monstrous.  So I get on the Deuce bus instead and head downtown. I write a lot of notes as I’m waiting for/riding the Deuce and they are all me beating myself up for that day I lost $400 IN ONE DAY like days ago. The stupid Quick Quads really irks me. Not only that, I did it twice. Not only THAT, I didn’t even know I did it twice until I got home and was typing this report.  Because this trip is so long that by the time I did it the second time, the first time was so far in the past it got lost in my senility.


I get to Fitzgeralds and decide that instead of using my comps for breakfast, I will take my comps as cash back. This nets me a whopping $14.  But steering clear of the Courtyard Cafe and their non-existent service extends my trip by a few hours.

I went to Binions for their breakfast special – $1.99 – eggs, hash browns and toast, add bacon for a dollar. I literally wait an hour to be seated. Ah, New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas. I will say though, that this is the first day I had to deal with the crowds this entire trip.  Breakfast (or lunch as its now almost 1:00) was wonderful. The servers were great, quick, attentive, etc. They also give you water without you having to ask for it. I didn’t think I had enough comps to cover it as I haven’t been playing here, but I do. This confuses me until I remember I went degenerate here a few days back and racked up some comps.

After eating, I walked over to the Las Vegas Club and played Double Double Bonus video poker.  After which I went to the Player’s Club to pick up my cash back from here.  I am told I have 14 entries for some car they are giving away tomorrow. If you don’t take the car, you get $10k (I believe that was the prize) Surely I am going to win this.

I left and went to catch the 108 bus to go back to Sahara. I waited 45 minutes. Luckily it only takes 16 minutes to get to the Sahara.  While waiting, I got to see Goose, who is the Las Vegas bomb sniffing dog.  He was at  work checking all the garbage pails by the bus stop. He ruled.

Back at Sahara, I went to my room and shower and get dressed. I’m still not entirely sure what I am doing tonight. As  has been established, I hate crowds. But I’m never going to be here on New Year’s Eve again so maybe I should go outside. Who knows.

I leave my room at around 5:00 and get on the Deuce bus. The strip isn’t closed yet, but it’s getting there. Traffic isn’t nearly as jammed as the day that dude freaked out on the bus driver though. I get off at the Mirage to see their free volcano show. It only lasted about fifteen seconds, and then there were a bunch of workers out there so I guess they were doing something.

Mirage Volcano Las Vegas, Nevada

I had forgotten my phone in my room so I don’t know how long I was waiting for a full show but I’d guess about an hour. Hey – I had nothing else to do.

Gave up and walked to Planet Hollywood. Free pull = zero. I thought I’d take the 202 bus over to Sam’s Town and check out the East Side Cannery casino next door, since I didn’t do either any of the days they were on my itinerary. But the 202 bus stopped running from the Strip for New Year’s Eve.  You have to walk to Koval. I attempt this but it’s just taking too long.  I had just walked a bunch on the Strip with 2389748392748932748 people around me and I just want OUT of here. So I break my boycott of the monorail and get on that back to Sahara.

Once there, I’m hungry. Coffee shop line = death. Then I remember I’m here on a New Year’s Eve offer that includes a party which features a dinner buffet. I’m not dressed for a fancy New Year’s party.  I wasn’t planning to go to the party. But a quick lurk by shows people in shorts and sneakers so I figure I’m okay. I get my bracelet and hit the buffet. It was fine. There were very limited choices but it’s free so who cares?

As a bonus, no one ever came and took my drink order so I didn’t leave a tip. At first I thought you were supposed to get your drinks yourself.  But then I saw a waiter go to every table, bypass me and continue onto other tables. I got back to my room at 9:46, still completely unsure of what I’m going to do tonight.  I figure I’ll gamble while I figure it out. Nickel Double Double bonus video poker – aces! $40 bucks. Wheeeeee!

Sahara Las Vegas last aces of 2008

Its 10:39 and I’m in my room AGAIN. I decide I will do New Year’s Eve outside on the Las Vegas Strip. I go and wait for the elevator. The door opens and before I realize why, a man inside says “it wasn’t us!”  Then I’m hit with the strongest smell of weed EVER. It was stronger than when I’ve been in a room fullllllllllllll of people smoking. So gross. I truly hate the smell of weed.

I make it down to the strip at 11:48 and went to take a picture and UGHHHHHHHHH. My camera is in my room. No no no no no no no no nooooooo. I have twelve minutes to run back to my room and back to the Strip. I bolt for my room, grab my camera in a panicked rush, run right back out to go back down in the elevator. I get on and it stops at a floor on the way down and a man with five kids gets in.  The door shuts and the kids all start screaming and jumping up and down like freaking lunatics, causing the elevator to start shaking. I am convinced that all this motion is going to make the elevator come to an emergency stop. I am already panicked over my camera, I have to get back to the strip NOW and this is just really freaking me out. I just snapped and YELLED out loud “are you fucking kidding me???” One of the kids stops and she tells the other four to stop. The father didn’t even look near my (or their) direction, ever.

I make it back to the strip at 11:59 and about 30 seconds. As soon as I hit the power button on my camera, the fireworks go off.  Some chick comes flyyyyyyyyyyyying out of nowhere and I see her coming at me and the next thing I know I am in a cloud of what I thought was glitter, but turned out to be confetti.  She screaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaams “HAPPY FUCKING NEW YEAR” in my face. I liked her.

The crowd was not bad AT ALL. Probably because I was so far north.  It was not as crowded as the Strip was earlier when I was further south. Porta potties and people:

new years porta potties Las Vegas Strip New Year's Eve

I try and take pictures of the fireworks but my camera SUCKS SO BAD.  It hates the night and I HATE this camera. Hate it. I try playing with the settings and then just give up. The girl in green running towards me in this picture is the one who threw confetti and screamed “HAPPY FUCKING NEW YEAR” in my face.

Las Vegas New Year's Eve fireworks on the Strip

Las Vegas New Year's Eve fireworks on the StripLas Vegas New Year's Eve fireworks on the Strip

I decide to take advantage of the strip being closed to traffic, to walk down and get a nice picture of the Riviera (LOVE) from the street without anything blocking my view.

Riviera Las Vegas New Year's Eve

Rivera Las Vegas New Year's Eve

I get there.  I’m trying to take a picture.  A young  couple comes up and stands in front of me, blocking my camera.  The female starts saying SOMETHING to me in some accent. I “what?” without looking away from my camera.  She keeps repeating the same sentence over and over.  It sounds something like “fire the wire”  After about ten times of me saying “WHAT?” while not looking at her ever, while trying to maneuver my camera around her as she stands in my way, she keeps repeating “fire the wire”  The dude with her pulls her aside and says something very low to her, sans accent. I caught the word “tourist” This is when I decide I’m on television. I’m on one of those PUNK’D! shows. There is just no way in hell this is seriously happening for real. So being that I don’t want to be on television, I walk away with her now yelling “STEW-PID BITCH” at me. Hey, fuck you too.

As I am walking back to the Sahara, a fight breaks out.  About a dozen cops come bursting out of nowhere and break it up instantly. I have NO IDEA where they came from. It scared me, not the fight but the bum rush of cops. It was just like a loud unexpected burst that I never saw coming.

The fight was between a whole lotta guys. One of the fighters got arrested.  He was yelling to his friends to not let him go alone. One guy asks another one “you gotta blade?” He answers “yes” and I start walking faster.

Back to the Sahara. I try to play a bit but every machine I love and all the ones I kind of like and even all the ones I hate, are all being played. So I go back up to my room.  I wrote in my notes “bed at 1:30″ which is usually the last notation I make before going to sleep.  Tonight, I lit a cigarette and as I smoke it, I keep up with my picture log. Well after the “bed at 1:30″ entry there is a whole LOT of whining about how OH MY GOD I DELETED MY PICTURES. Pages of it. I deleted ALL my pictures. All of them. I can pinpoint exactly when it happened to, when I was trying to adjust this stupid camera to take pictures of the fireworks. No no no no nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo. No. No. Yhis isn’t happening. I HATE my camera and I found a much nicer one in the bathroom at Treasure Island and turned it in instead of keeping it. This cannot possibly be my karma from that??  I burst into tears and fall asleep crying.  Happy fucking 2009.

Spoiler alert: I do get all my pictures back.  Obviously as you are seeing them in this report.

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