Even happy ones.
I always get a tad melancholy when I finish a book, particularly one with passionate characters.
I easily fall in love, I think.
But mostly the attraction comes from their spirits, their acts of derring-do, the passion with which they seem to live each day of their lives.
The passion I believe I severely lack.
Meh. But enough of that tawdry drudgery. I complain enough about that.
I just got back from Vegas about thirty minutes ago. Horny as a bunny rabbit, but otherwise feeling swell. Perhaps a tad hungry.
Well, more than a tad.
The trip was entertaining, and vastly different from my previous Vegas trips this year.
I have been to Vegas four times this year already.
Once in January with the Doi. All we did was shop and eat. David and Emily hunted me down the last night of that trip. Well, it was mostly David. Emily was along for the ride entirely against her will.
Again in February with just David, before the spring semester began. I believe we stayed at the Luxor. We walked around the Strip, took in the sights and visited various hotels. Oh, and Gameworks, of course. We’re both fairly competitive. I kicked his ass at Tekken 5, AND air hockey. If I remember correctly, it was our contention to just spend some “quality time” together before school started, and the newspaper went into full swing.
He and I also went to Vegas in April, toward the end of spring break. We stayed at the Imperial Palace, right on the Strip. Again, more walking. I’ve developed a hierarchy of my favorite hotels. The first tier consists of the Wynn, the Bellaggio, and the Venetian coming in at a very distant third. I suppose the first tier is all that matters. The Wynn was simply too perfect for me. Immediately upon entering, I gasped in surprise and delight. Again, more furious rounds at Gameworks, where he finally gave me sound competition.
And now we come to this most recent Vegas trip. As mentioned, vastly different. This time, Noel and Mare came along. Actually, the entire trip was for Noel. Saturday was supposed to be his birthday party at Wilson Park, but he changed his mind and opted for Vegas.
So. We set off for Vegas early Friday morning, and arrived at my mother’s condo at around 10:30 a.m. Now, for this entire trip, we had a beast of a time trying to find our way around. Traffic and street signs, and city plannng are terrible in Vegas. We got lost during almost every venture away from my mom’s condo.
But I digress. After arriving on Friday, we unpacked and settled in a bit. My mother lives in a cozy little condo during week while she’s working in Vegas. A one-bedroom affair, with little personality, I say. Sure, there were some photos of my brother and I as children sprinkled about, but other than that one would think she was touring a model home. The photos surprised me. I suppose it surprises me when my mother behaves motherly.
But again, I digress.
After settling in, we met Noel’s friend Sheryl for lunch. She led us to Yummy’s, a Japanese/Chinese fusion restaurant. The food was pretty good. We then went to a little park by an artificial lake, and we baked in the sun. [Interjection: I got pretty damn dark during this trip.]
After our little jaunt in the sun, we were all pretty tired. Most of us are night owls, so waking up at 4 a.m. was starting to take its toll, and we headed back to the condo for a very nice, long nap. Afterward, we ate dinner at Sonic’s. While searching for the restaurant, we passed by a Lucky’s. Flashback! We were all little kids again. Apparently Lucky’s is making a comeback, and some Albertson’s are being converted into the old familiar grocery store. David was elated to discover they still sold his favorite ice cream: some chocolate, peanut butter hoo-ha.
We tanked again after that.
Saturday. When we finally got up, Mare made a pot of coffee, I made cornbread and David scrambled eggs. Then we hit the outlet mall on Charleston. The blistering heat was terrible. I felt like the air was sucking me dry. Giant Pez dispensers drew me to a candy shop. Now, I have been looking for a place that sells gummy bears individually by flavor for quite some time now. Really, pineapple is just about the only flavor I will eat, and I love it with such ardor, but packs of gummies rarely have enough for me to get my fix. Lo and behold, this place had gummies up the ying yang individually. Peach, root beer, etcetera. BUT NO PINEAPPLE. They were sold out. Picked clean. Completely LACKING. Oh, the disappointment I suffered. I was very sad. And also very melodramatic.
This shopping excursion ended with everyone buying clothes except me. Back to the condo, once again, to freshen up before picking up Noel’s friend Kat and going to Cathy Celino’s party. I know Cathy and Bianca from grade school. I barely spoke to them in high school, but because of Noel I ended up at Cathy’s Vegas 21st birthday shindig. Where Filipino hospitality forced us to eat. And eat. Plenty of lumpia. And drink. Plenty of alcohol. Noel promptly got wasted and started blathering on about the love of his life. Our main objective became to get Noel OUT of that house before he did or said something truly dumb, but he sang karaoke and spilled popsicle juice before we managed to get him into his truck. Mare drove and we took Kat home. As Noel was properly wasted, we took him back to the condo. It was barely 9 p.m. Barely. None of us wanted to leave him alone and unsupervised, though the plan had initially been to go to the Strip and wander the Forum shops that night. We decided to just cook dinner at the condo. David went for groceries. Fried chicken and salad. Thanks again to Mare for cooking the food. When the food was finally ready, Noel roused himself to eat. He was already doing remarkably better. He had knocked out on his inflatable mattress the moment we got back from the party.
Again, everyone tanked early Saturday night. It was a sad thing. We were in Vegas, the city that never sleeps, but none of us could keep our eyes open past 1 a.m.
Now we come to the final day, today. We woke up, showered and such, did light cleaning, packed, and went in search of lunch. In-N-Out became our destination, and wow, was it packed.
We then finally made it to the Forum shops. It has become a sort of tradition for David and I to have one of those monster ice cream milkshakes from FAO Schweetz, so FAO Schwarz was the first destination on our list. Of course, we wandered the toy store first. I was immediately tempted by an owl stuffed toy, but upon traversing the giant toy store, I settled on getting a replacement Tangle and a Batman Monopoly set, though I loathe the game. But I love Batman, and he seemed to be reaching out from the box cover to hug me. I simply could not resist the call of those remarkably strong arms. For Noel, we went to Fat Tuesday’s so he could get some fresh BBQ potato chips.
Finally! The long trek home. Traffic was ass-tacular, and only because of some ridiculous rubbernecking. Ah, and I got to see a trailer tire blow out. Tire pieces flew everywhere until he was driving on the rim. Not good.
The drive home was not terrible. I whiled away three hours by finishing up S. Morgenstern’s Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure: The Princess Bride, which is the source of my anguish and torment, as alluded to at the beginning of this blog.
I hate endings. In my mind, the end of a book signals the end of the characters’ lives. They do not exist beyond the confines of the book cover, try as I might to resurrect them in my reality. Though my reality is probably worlds away from yours. Truth be told, I am very rarely fully “there.” Most often a good deal of my mind is Elsewhere, the Elsewhere I’ve created in which every character I have ever loved and lost is still alive, still having lofty adventures and loving or hating just as fiercely as when they were first created.
I’d much rather be someone else’s character than myself, sometimes. Though who am I to say that I am not? I could very well be someone else’s creation, a someone with a very dull imagination.