I wasn't planning to go to Vegas this soon as I was just there at the end of November and thought I would wait until warmer weather but I received an email from US Air with a rate for a non-stop r/t flight from Orlando for $203. For anyone living on the east coast knows that's a great rate. Traveling solo and loving it.

It was MLK weekend and my journey for good hotel rates began. I just so happened to get a reduced rate offer in the mail from The Orleans which in my opinion is not so great compared to what I used to get and I was actually offended, first night $68, second night free. I used to get free nights plus food credits plus free slot play. I booked it anyway. I had reduced room offers at 4 Queens but that Sunday was sold out and Friday and Saturday were a bit much. Ended up booking a Fri. and Sat. at the Fremont for $72 per night and The Orleans for Sunday and Monday. As the days went on, I kept checking fatwallet and saw a great rate at Sam's Town for that Sunday and Monday so I double booked. A few days later the Fremont came down to $40 so called and they had me cancel that reservation and make a new online for the reduced rate. I thought it would be easier just to have them change it over the phone but she couldn't do it that way. I ended up canceling The Orleans for Monday and Tuesday and kept the Sam's Town reservation. I really didn't want to leave downtown but there wasn't availability that Sunday at any of the decent hotels. Cost of hotels for 4 nights including Friday and Saturday = $160.

This was my first stay at the Fremont and it was a nice clean room but I will have to admit, I like the 4 Queens a little better although I would definitely stay at the Fremont again. I missed having an in-room coffee maker and I just like the casino vibe at the 4 Queens. I had a nice view from the 14th floor but couldn't take any pictures because the Fremont has floor to ceiling window shutters that didn't open quite enough to take pictures. Bed was very comfortable and that means a lot to me. I noticed that downtown doesn't have the best water pressure though. I didn't spend much time at the Fremont except to play some slots and found myself across the street at the 4 Queens most of the time. Saturday morning stopped to get a cup of coffee and off to the Golden Gate for a $.99 shrimp cocktail and a $2.00 draft. I find sitting in the Deli area at the Golden Gate and people watching to be interesting and relaxing. Next, I was off to the 4 Queens where I ended up at a $5 bj table for the next 4 hours. All the players and dealers were fun and the pit boss was very pleasant with a great sense of humor and he was good looking too! After about a beer or eight, I half jokingly asked the pit boss what he had to offer for comps in which he replied 'what do you want?'. Well, I didn't want to be greedy and this was my first time ever asking for a comp I said how about dinner at Magnolia's and he said, for how many and how many rounds of drinks do you want with your meal?. Wow, I was really taken back with this as I didn't think a player at a $5 dollar justified anything. I felt like a queen at the 4 Queens! My dinner was pretty tasty. I had the Neptune platter which consisted of a small salmon fillet, 2 small crab cakes, 1 small skewer of shrimp, veggies and a salad. I was sitting at a booth overlooking the casino decided to take some pictures and apparently forgot to put the camera back in my purse and didn't notice until the next morning that my camera was missing. Of course, the person who found it, did not turn it into the restaurant or security. I just bought it in October, bummer.

Checked out Sunday a.m. and went to the El Cortez for a few hours before heading to Sam's Town. I had a bowl of chicken noodle soup at Careful Kitty's and it was delicious. Played a few slots and ended up at a $3 bj table which at first I thought was a $5 for the first hour hence the $5 bets. The table soon filled up fast with 5 other ladies. Thank goodness it was an all ladies tables because any guy would have gotten aggravated with us, you know girl talk! Bought in for $100 and left with $107. Not much profit but it was a great 3 hours! What I like about bj is the interaction with people that you don't really get playing slots.

Checked into Sam's Town and was given a recently updated room with a 42 inch TV (which I don't watch in Vegas) a coffee maker and a small refrigerator. I was really surprised at how nice the room was. I particularly love the large bathrooms at Sam's. The registration guy kept going on about what a bargain I got as the room was going for $150 that night and I got it for $45 through fatwallet. He made me feel guilty so I gave him a tip. Right away I noticed something that I have never seen at Sam's and that was a ton of young people dressed in black with spiked hair with pink, purple or green hair. There was a Punk Rocker's Bowling tournament that weekend. I'm a little surprised this grouped picked ST as it does have a reputation for having a bit older crowd which of course I'm not part of! I only stay at Sam's if I get comped rooms or at least discounts.

I never have any luck at the slots at Sam's and they have the worse drink service of any of the Boyd properties unless you're playing at the tables, which is where I ended up for the next 2 evenings. I found a 3:2 $5 table with a lot of great people and some really friendly dealers, probably the friendliest dealers so far. I lost my buy-in of $60 the first night and was up $40 the second night. As far as eating goes at Sam's, I had the steak and eggs at the Fresh Harvest café for $4.99 and it was great as always. On my last night before playing bj, I stopped at Jose and Willy's and ordered an appetizer of Taquitos as I wasn't hungry enough for an entrée. First, I was brought a huge tray of tortillas and chips, 2 kinds of salsa and a refried bean dip, delicious. Then came out a huge platter of chicken taquitos with a large dollop of sour cream, guacamole and a mound of shredded lettuce with pico de gallo. This could have been easily shared by 2 people. I highly recommend Jose and Willy's.

Checked out the next morning dropped the car off and made it to the airport 20 minutes before boarding. A little too close for comfort.