On the Road

Porterhouse, baby!

San Francisco, Yosemite, Mono Lake, Death Valley, and Las Vegas. Those were the highlights and low points of our whirl wind tour through the Wild West with 26 Dutch tourists and a trailer in tow.

What do we do on our night off in Vegas? Sleep!

Well, not exactly. There was a $70 Porterhouse and a couple of serious margaritas involved to soothe the pain from our babysitting job.
San Francisco was fantastic. The best Chinese food at the house of Nanking, thank you Peter. The best Dim Sum at Tom Kiang, some Russian Pastry, and a great World Cup final.

Yosemite is a zoo. This is not a park. Ban all private traffic and commerce in the Valley. Enough said.

Mono Lake surprised us with a spectacular thunder storm. Wish you were here, if you know what I mean…

Then we roasted at the furnace of Death Valley. It was 48C. Dry heat, though. It melted off the sole of one of our passengers.

Finally Vegas, baby. Tolerable only with blood alcohol levels exceeding the legal limit.

On with the show…

On the Road

Postcard from Vegas #2

Color Explosion

Color Explosion

Smoke and mirrors. Lots of mirrors and reflections. It fits this place, where not much is real, except the dineros changing hands.

I cannot comprehend the appeal of Vegas. And that is ok.

Out of words to describe this artificial world.

One thing I do understand. Vegas was built in the right location. Smack in the middle of a desert, that makes anybody seek shelter inside, an air-conditioned climate.

On the Road

Adventures in Skin City

It feels beyond surreal to be immerse myself into the madness of Las Vegas after a year in the bush of Alaska. 107 degrees of scorching heat are simply intolerable. Even walking by the entrances of the casinos delivers a welcome breeze of cool air oozing out of the air-conditioned palaces of game and glitter.

Hordes of women in super short, and breathtakingly tight dresses (ed. leaving it open whose breath they are taking away), and men from chic to shabby parade the Strip, chasing their dreams. Weird plastic containers in the shape of a water pipe filled with gallons of a cold drink seem to be en vogue. Wearing black is still fashionable, despite the heat. Then there are street performers fully dressed as spiderman, the hulk, Kiss and robots. And some dancers, lesser dressed, who have their picture taken with tourists. It’s a zoo.

Flashing billboards and other light effects turn the night into an outdoor spectacle. Loud music is drowned by a dozen of Ferraris roaring down the Strip.

My biggest adventure that night was that I lost my car. Couldn’t find it to save my life. I thought I returned to the parking structure where I had left it, to no avail. A security guard on a mountain bike scanned the building after I had searched for an hour, walking miles and miles in a smelly parking structure. After that I got a ride with another security officer, checking every floor. No luck. They hadn’t towed a car on a long time, maybe stolen? Well a long 3 hour story short. I retraced my steps as well as I could, which isn’t that simple in Vegas, and finally found, exactly where I had left it. Uff. I didn’t get lost in the Alaskan wilderness in a year. In Vegas, I was lost within a day…