We still talk about our first trip to Vegas, and our introduction to the desert heat. It was years ago, right after the fire at MGM. We got off an air conditioned plane and proceeded thru the air conditioned airport, and took an air conditioned cab to the front door of an air conditioned Aladdin Hotel. About 4 hours after arrival we decided to walk across the street to the Dunes. We stepped out to a beautiful blue sky with blazing sun and a temperature of 105. After a few minutes, we retreated back to the cool confines of Aladdin until the sun went down. We enjoyed that first trip immensley and have been returning on a regular basis ever since. Our last venture to Vegas was on April 11, 2005, with a 4 day stay at the Aladdin. We had been watching the weather reports and they were not good for Vegas. Rain and cool temperatures were dominating the forcast, but we still packed our bathing suits and good thing we did. We arrived on an America West flight and were greeted with 80 degrees, the first warm spell in Vegas for some time. Three hours at the Aladdin pool were more than enough for a sunburn. That night, we took a cab to the Riviera Hotel for dinner at Kristofers Steak House. Nothing can beat their filet mignon and stuffed mushrooms. We always plan for a meal at Kristofers every trip we take. Then it was back to the Aladdin where we challenged the Wild Cherry and Red, White and Blue machines we usually play with good results. Later, we would find adjoining Double Bonus Poker machines and compare our skills, while drinking on the house. We took our second tour to Primm so Charlene could find a certain pocketbook she wanted. The trip was relaxing but there is nothing to see except all that barren land. The slot machines, Wild Cherry and Red, White and Blue, kept us busy until the ride back. The next day we walked the strip visiting each casino, with a special stop at the Mirage where we always get the best coffee and pastry at the Roasted Bean. In the evening, we always get to watch the volcano and never get tired of viewing this attraction. Then get a meal at the California Pizza and make a few bets on the nags, before walking back to the Aladdin. The next morning, while watching the news, we learned that cigarette lighters would no longer be allowed on airplanes. We had just purchased a dozen specialty lighters as souvenirs for friends, so Charlene hit the panic button. I went to the VIP Desk at the Aladdin and found out that there was a business center on the second floor that had shipping facilities. For a small fee, our cigarette lighters were packaged and shipped by ground transportation to our home in Jersey. It took one week before we received our lighters. We packed our bags to go home and at McCarran Airport studied the faces of persons waiting to depart, with frowns and sadness on their faces, while those arriving were all smiles. That's what Vegas does to people. We arrived home with our memories and a couple rolls of film to be developed. Within 10 days, we located a good deal for another return trip and out came the credit card and calendar. Trip # 49 is now scheduled for August 22nd and we will become 2 of those smiling faces at McCarran once again. Viva Las Vegas.