This trip was not going to be a lot of gambling, just needed to get away from reality for few days. 3 guys from my building had a Microsoft conf. to go to. It was at Mandalay Bay. So I was going to crash couple nights with one of the guys Monday and Tuesday.
Got a room for me and other guy at the Westward Ho for Saturday night because the company was paying for Sunday-Thur. The Ho room was $50, not bad, it's hard to get a cheap room on the strip just for Saturday night only, and most places want a 2-day stay.
Flew out non stop on southwest from Cleveland for $176. So not a bad price for a Vegas trip.

So, let's get it on!
Woke up Saturday and had so much sinus problems and coughing, I didn't even want to go. Went to the airport at noon for my 4:45PM flight. If I had waited for reasonable time I probably would of fell asleep and missed my flight. Got to the airport bar and started drinking (have a fear of flying). One of the guys was flying out with me. 30 empty seats on plane, he sat at the window me on the aisle, empty seat in the middle. I'm glad of that, being 6'4 270 I need some ROOM!

Got to the airport luggage area, put $5 in slot won $20, if I leave now I'm up..lol. Buddy and I get on the shuttle to the HO, took about hour and a half to get there after waiting for the bus to fill up and drop off's. Swear the driver took us on a tour..Lol. Got checked into the HO, been a long time since I had a real room key, I'm talking about 1 pound big gold real key ! Guy behind the desk told me 'Don't go by the room number on the key, it don't match' Nice clean room, big room, that's all I ask. Only going to be there 1 night so not much unpacking, other guys where staying with an old friend 40 min out of Vegas until Sunday. Met up with them at Terrible's, had the prime rib. It was ok, still like the I.P. prime rib sandwich served after midnight. After dinner walked over to Hard Rock, the guys wanted to go to club there. Let me give some background on these guys, one guy married, diabetic, don't drink, don't gamble. 2nd guy drinks, don't gamble. 3rd guy 26 year old kid (I'm 40 I can call him a kid) drinks too much, never been to Vegas. I told these guys before we left I don't have money for clubs and gambling, I can go to clubs in Ohio. The club was not opened yet, took cab down to The Beach. Walked in, nobody asked for a cover charge, guy at the door asked for my business card, he looked at it, asked some other worker who shook is head no, the guy gave me back my card and told us to go on in. I'm thinking WTF was that all about? Go to the bar order 3 beers, have money in hand, bartended says on the house. Once again WTF? Buddies don't believe I didn't pay. Walked around for about 10 min. then saw this banner on the wall that said 'Welcome NAB Convention' had all these different company's logo underneath. Below that it said 'Work Party 2005' We had crashed a private party, sweet! No wonder drinks were free. Stayed there and drank free and danced until 1:00 AM. Got a cab asked where could we go where there wouldn't be a long line. I hate lines. Driver said Tangerine at Treasure Island. He had passes. He was driving fast, my buddy said 'Why don't you step on it', he must have had a 2nd gas pedal because he hit that and we went like the car in 'Back to the Future'. My buddy screamed 'I was just kidding!!'

Got to the club, no cover charge spent about 3 hours there drinking over price beer. Went to bar to get 2 jager-bombs, '$22.50 please' WHAT ?, daaaaaam ! Left there and we walked back to the HO, stopped at the counter to get food to take to the room. For about 3 months my buddy was like 'I'm eating a HO dog' I had sent him pics of it. We get up to counter and somebody next to us was getting a HO dog handed to him, my buddy said 'What the F$%^& is that '!!!? I said that's the hot dog you're going to eat, he didn't order it. It scared him..lol lol . We both got scrambled eggs, 2 pieces of bacon and sausage gravy and biscuits for I think $2.29. It was good at 5:00 am. Looked at my watch, which I never set, still on Ohio time it said 8:00 AM, dang I need sleep, been up for 24 hrs.

Part II coming - Bad things & Good things -

Woke up Sunday morning after 3 hrs sleep (This little sleep would hurt me soon). My buddy is snoring away (snoring annoys me worse than anything) Got a shower, grabbed my camera and wallet and started out the door. Looked in my wallet, 'Hey where is...daam..I went thru all the $80 I took with me last night' Those $7 beers will do that. Grabbed $20 walked into the HO casino, saw somebody eating a HO dog, was going to buy one and when my buddy woke up have it there right in front of his face, probably would of gave him a heart attack. LoL.. Put the $20 in a $1 Wheel of fortune, 2 spins later bonus wheel came up, spin the wheel lands on $100, cash out, I'm thinking 'Hey if I go home now I'm even again. Walked over to Riviera, got in line to spin the machine and get a free mug. Got my mug walked out and there on the sidewalk was a dollar bill folded, laying there. Went to pick it up thinking probably a trick somebody is going to pull it away with a string, no string, and the lucky dollar that I wrote the word lucky on it was in my back pocket. Walked over to Sluts-of...sorry, I'm mean Slots-of-fun, saw a sign for free coffee and doughnuts, signed up for their slut..ummm, slot card and took my food back to the room, we had to check out by 11:00AM.

Got checked out and didn't look like any cabs come to the back of the HO, a lot of people waiting by the cab line. So we dragged all our stuff over to the Stardust cab line, there was about 10 people in line. Got in the cab, driver said 'Hope you guys are not going to the Airport because it's a zoo right now'. Nope, take us to Mandalay Bay. Couldn't check until noon, so we stood in this very long line to check our bags. After that we walked over to the Luxor and got a bite to eat at the Mexican place in there. Good food. After that we walked back over, while crossing the street to the Bay, (I always follow what the walk/stop sign says) The sign says walk,a car decided to turn right on red, if I hadn't been watching he would of put me on his hood. So after that little ,almost heart attack my buddy got us checked in. Went to the room, Wow ! what a great room. My buddy on is first trip to Vegas went from the HO to Mandalay Bay. That's a big step up.
Nice big bathroom. We where on 13th floor, pool view. The other 2 guys had a view of the roof...lol , they were pissed. Called up for our bags and then went out to the pool. Stayed out there for awhile enjoying the scenery, they have a topless pool area, walked up there. $30 to get in ! - Pleeeeease ! So I did what any little kid would do, look thru the cracks in the wall ! Left the pool area, went in, played a little slots, nothing to talk about.

Was hungry so talked 2 of the guys to go to Ellis Island with me. My favorite place to eat, great $ 4.95 steak special. So took the tram from Mandalay to Excalibur, walked across the bridge to Tropicana, took my free spin to win a convertible car, nothing. Guy told me since he has been there like 5 years, 3 people have won the car. 2 people from Calif. and
1 from Vegas. They all took the cash, after taxes he said he came to about $12,000.
Walked into the MGM. Saw the lions, in the 8 times I have been in there lions were always asleep, not this time. They where walking around and looked like they were posing for the camera's. Walked past slot machines where a Dodge Viper was on top as a prize. Started yelling the line from the 'Vegas Vacation' movie. 'I put a quarter in the machine and won a car' So we all put 3 quarter's in. Zilch.. It's a long walk back to the monorail. I was chanting 'monorail' 'monorail' 'monorail' like the episode on the simpson's when they get a monorail for the town. Very easy system to get a ticket and get on the monorail. When the guys found out that we where getting off at the first stop they where like 'WE COULD OF WALKED HERE!' Well they found out that first stop was a little farther than they thought. Got off at Ballys and walked thru there to the street. Walked down to koval and into Ellis Island. I hadn't been there since last Oct. and the famous free drink incident. Me and a buddy had used the all-you-can-drink-any-drink-you-want coupon and after about 10 Grey-Goose martini's and shot's and jack-cokes, and anything else on the top shelf we could drink. Our other buddy (who is cheap as anything) came over to see if I could get free drinks for these 2 guys who made him some money at the black jack table. So I was cool and said - 'Yeah just sit over there and I will take care of it' Well as you all know, you can't be drunk and cool, so as soon as I turned around to give the guys the drinks, bartender saw me, she screamed 'FREE DRINKS OVER,GET OUT!!' So we tucked our tails between our legs and did the walk of shame.
So I walked into the place half expecting to see my pic on the wall that said 'Kick this guy out if you see him' Cool no picture of me. Sat down and told everybody to just get the steak special. You get a big salad, choice of tater , and garlic green beans. Called my buddy(the cheap one) back home, blocked my number so he wouldn't see the number and soon as he answered I said - should I get baked potato or fries? he knew where I was at didn't even have to tell him, he said 'always baked potato' Meal came out and I took a pic with my phone and e-mailed it to him so he could see it Monday morning. We left and went back the same way we came. Put 3 quarter's in, daam, no viper today.

Got back to the Bay and went up to the Mix bar. It's about 60 floors up, nice view, you can see all the way down the strip with all the lights. After that bunch of us went downtown, walked around there and got one of those plastic footballs with beer in it. Went into the Vegas Club and sat down to play some black jack. $5, double-deck table. For some reason my buddy had a hard time counting to 21, he kept on flipping his cards over thinking he busted, so of course the dealer had to tell him quit doing that, and the pit boss came over and stood there, because I was winning and he probably thought I was looking at my buddies cards and counting. Pleeease ! Went back up to the strip and walked over to play some $3 BJ at the board walk, played there to about 3:00AM and walked back to the Bay. Very, very, windy outside, got to sleep about4:00 AM.

Part III of Good Things & Bad Things soon !
Part III Good things & Bad Things.

Here comes one of the Bad things. Woke up Monday AM with pretty much the flu. My back ached, my legs, my arms, my head, my jaw...you get the picture, ALL OVER MY BODY !!! Well I can not let this get me down, did the whole trip back to Ellis Island, tram, spin the Trop wheel (dang no convertible!), MGM, 'Hello sleeping lions !', quarters in the slots(dang no viper today !!), long walk back to the monorail, 'monorail, monorail, monorail ! Got to Ellis Island, another $4.95 steak special and homemade beer. Was flirting with my very hot waitress, (doesn't matter if I'm sick, I still had enough energy to flirt..lol). Told her I will see her in July. Walked up to the strip by Barbary Coast. Hadn't been there all trip. I like the places around there. That's the one thing I missed doing a lot this trip because being so far up the strip. Walked thru Barbary, played a few slots. Why is the bar in the Barbary look like it's torn down? Anybody know - Walked over to O'shea's, sat down at $5 let-it-ride table, was getting good cards only when I had my last bet out, stayed there for about an hour, until my $60 had turned into $20, cashed out. Walked over to I.P., called my dad to see if he was online so he could see me online at the I.P. cam website. He was not home, my mom told me to play these $.25 slots along the wall, didn't win anything. Walked down to Casino-Royale with cheese, bought a $1 mickey-lobe, and played a little craps for $20. Finally got to throw the dice, first throw, bounced, right off the table ! lol. Left $20 there, walked over to Mirage, walked to Caesars walked around, feeling sick to gamble or drink. Walked back over to Barbary, had the hot dog and beer special ($3.00) at the hot dog cart. That little old oriental women at the cart I see for the past 10 years is there. Asked her how long she been here every day it seems like, she said 23 years. Told her I would be back in July I'll see her again, she said 'Ok, you come see me....lol'. Backtracked my way back to the room, got there about 5:00pm, by now I was sweating, and shaking, and achey all over and shivering. Got into the big bathtub, and soaked in hot water for about an 1 hour, just trying to get warm. Got out and put about 4 t-shirts on and sweatpants and crawled into bed shivering. Slept on and off, was in a sick coma. Woke up about 8pm when my buddy came in. Got up took a shower to warm me up, got dressed and went down stairs and play some wheel of fortune, made plans to meet all the guys at 10:00PM for my last night in vegas. Went over to the Sushi bar and had a great spicy tuna roll. Sat around for about 30 min. there was no way I was going out, I wouldn't of wanted me around to bring down the party, didn't feel like drinking or loud music or laughing or talking. So cancelled plans with the guys and went to bed. In and out of sleep, those weird dreams you get when sick. My buddy came in drunk about 2:00AM. He passed out and started snoring loud. I'm yell HEY, HEY, SHUTUP!!. Went over and started whomping him with a pillow, he didn't budge, tried to roll him over, nothing. Thought about doing a Jimmy Super-Fly-Snuka (For all you wrestling fans from early 80's remember him?) That would of woke him up, 270 lbs. falling on you. But probably would of hurt me too. So got up, put on my Ohio state pullover, sweatpants, baseball hat and glasses and went down to the casino. At 3:00AM a lot of weird people in the place, I guess since I was not drunk I thought they where weird. So soon as I sat down at a machine, you know what's coming. 'Hey honey you winning' lol..lol. Saw hookers from age 16-50. I like older women so I think they knew that, because it was like that Seinfeld episode where Jerry's uncle is stealing books and the security guards yells to the other guards 'swarm! swarm! swarm!

They came out of the woodwork for me. Must have been a bad night for them to come on to me. I was looking sick and homeless in my sweatpants and hat, unshaven..lol As soon as you tell them 'I'm loosing my ass!' , they will leave you alone and leave. Went back upstairs and the snore monster had calmed down. Woke up Tuesday just wanting to go home, I knew it was going to be a sick flight home. My flight didn't leave until 4:45 pm. I was glad it was non-stop. So got up and thought about going to Paris buffet but just couldn't make the walk there. So packed up and went downstairs to Mandalay buffet for breakfast. It was o.k, but for $13.00 it sucked. Was just going to go to the airport early so I wouldn't fall asleep in the room. Walked over to the Luxor and started playing $1 keno. Was picking my numbers and watching baseball game. Drink girl was walking by me every 5 min. DAAAM wish I was feeling better, I would have been drinking like a fish. Finally I was like screw this, give me a jack-n-diet coke. Started drinking that, soon as I finish, uh-oh, I don't feel well, went to the bathroom in the casino to get sick, was trying to be as quiet as I can, when all of a sudden this guys comes in about 3 stalls down and starts getting sick, sounded like a alien was coming out of his throat !!! So I hear this and start getting sick again. If I hear people I'm done. So left there went back to play some keno. I had $40 left, $20 for the cab ride to the airport. So that left me about $20 gambling money left. 2 months ago I won $500 in the Ohio Lottery so that paid for my plane ticket and used the rest for gambling since this was going to be a low gambling trip. So I was going to play the $20 in a $1 Wheel-of-misfortune machine, since chasing the wheel the last 2 days took all my money. Couldn't find them, saw these $5 wheel-of-fortune, there were 3 of them. Found the one I like, the red,white,blue sevens. Put my $20 in there, you get 4 credits, at 2 credits a spin, you get 2 spins. Hit the max coin button, can you believe on the 3rd line BONUS WHEEL ?!!!. Spun the bonus wheel, STOPPED ON $1000 !!! Music started playing and nobody around to show this too ! Played the other 2 credits, nothing, cashed out, got the voucher that said $1,000. Went back to get my camera, had to take a pic of this. Was walking back, looking around me to see if anybody saw that win and was following me..lol. Got my camera, took pic of voucher and walked back to Luxor and took pic with camera and phone of the machine, cashed voucher, grabbed my bags, went to airport, flew home (when your sick ride seems like 8 hours instead of 4) Got home about 2:00AM, slept all daaay wed. Got a letter from Cleveland Browns saying the my $904 for season tickets were due May 3, mailed that in(Thank you wheel of misfortune..lol) So trip started out good and ended good. I will be back in July where there will be a lot of drinking and gambling and drinking and partying, did I mention a lot of drinking?