Friday, February 13, 2009

Las Vegas again

We left Beatty pretty early this morning. The walls at the hotel were paper-thin so we heard when our next door neighbors were taking their showers. Plus, whenever we flushed the toilet, it made such a racket that it sounded like the person using the toilet had just gotten sucked into the toilet too.

Motel 6 is a trip. Our bed had a Motel 6-themed bedspread with depictions of people traveling and staying at Motels 6. I never saw this type of product placement before! The shower had the force of a fire engine hose. And the TV skipped certain stations that the motel said we had access too, such as CNN.

We drove into Death Valley, which was quite amazing. There were really interesting looking mountains, sand dunes, other rock formations, and these plains covered in salt where there used to be a river or lake. And did I mention that the temperature was in the 50's and there wasn't any snow at all?

View of the salt plains:

Me, on top of a sand dune, with mountains in distance:

We also toured "Scotty's Castle," which was a summer mansion built in the 1920's by a millionaire life insurance executive named Albert Johnson. His "friend" was Walter Scott, who was basically a con-man who stayed at the castle for entertainment value (he told wild stories about his life as a cowboy with Buffalo Bill Cody). The mansion was colloquially referred to as Scotty's Castle because people would come there to hear his crazy stories. We had a really good tour and heard some great stories about what life was like back then.

Here's Jim in front of the "castle":

After that, we headed back to Las Vegas. It was starting to rain and we felt like we had gotten to see a lot of Death Valley. It took a couple of hours to get back to Vegas. We drove down Las Vegas Blvd on the way to our hotel and had a look at some of the crazy casino/resorts there. Really, it is a cross between Times Square in New York and Disney World. There was a lot of traffic, probably due to the fact that it was Friday and tomorrow is Valentine's Day.

We got dinner at a place called Bahama Breeze, which had nice seafood. We're staying in tonight and we'll go explore the sights of Las Vegas tomorrow.

I'll catch you back here tomorrow and tell you about Las Vegas.

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