Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Viva Las Vegas!

The Saga Continues: Post Number 3:

Where did I leave off...oh yes, we finally went to king size bed in our upgraded for free suite at the Venetian Hotel and Casino after a much needed bubble bath in the outrageously large tub! What a long day/night. To my recollection, I don't think John or I even said good night to one another. Our heads hit the pillows and the next thing I remember is the alarm going off at 8:00am.

Feeling rejuvenated, we both got up and started to get ready for our day. I took a shower to wash my hair while John went to the bathroom, then ironed our shirts, then went to the bathroom, then took a shower, which was interrupted by him having to go to the bathroom. Never before have I seen so much crap come out of one person! Knowing we were getting ready to go on a two hour road trip I asked him if he thought he could make it? And like a trooper, he said that if we stopped for some diarrhea medicine he thought he would be okay. All righty then!

While I was getting ready for the graduation ( the whole reason we were in Vegas in the first place) I wondered if I should wear the dress I had brought for the trip (remember that?) or a nice shirt and skirt outfit I had packed. John said that the graduation was not a formal event so he thought the shirt and skirt was appropriate. I agreed and put on a really nice asymmetrical black and white skirt with a wrap around white blouse with some strappy saddles. I looked GOOD! Needless to say, John couldn't keep his hands off of me and he proceeded to remind me that we were on vacation, without kids (if you know what I mean). Enough said about that :-)

When we finally got out of the room we had to decide where to eat breakfast. After our dinner the night before, this decision was an important one. I was so very hungry and poor John needed to get something in his stomach that would hopefully help his little situation with the potty. Knowing that The Rio has a very good buffet we headed for the car.

I had remembered to write down the location of the car the night before in my Knitting Notebook so I just pulled it out and finding the car was a snap. Even my husband told me that was a good idea as he couldn't remember what make or color the mini van was. Just like any mom, I was mentally going through a checklist of things I had to make sure we had with us since we were not coming back to the hotel for several hours.

  • Husband...check
  • Keys...check
  • Knitting Bag...check
  • Purse...check
  • Map...check
  • Directions to the graduation
He had forgotten them in the room what with all the "you look so good" discussion we had :-) and had to go back up and get them. Meanwhile, I took the liberty to take a good look at the map and locate our hotel in reference to The Rio, the highway, the place we were planning on eating dinner and the airport. Yep, that about covered it...I was definitely ready to drive in Vegas. When John got back he agreed and I was the one to drive the rest of the trip ;-)

This made me really happy since driving with John is such a nightmare. You know when you are ridding with somebody and you both are looking for a certain place but the person driving isn't driving slow enough that when you notice the turn is about ten feet ahead he can't turn in time and blames you for not mentioning it sooner? Well, that is what is it like driving with John...only worse when we are in a new city! (Amazing we come) So, when he said I could drive I was T-H-R-I-L-L-E-D!

Turn here, Speed Bump There, A Jump, Skip and a Hop and I was in the parking garage at the Rio. Even John said he was impressed with how well I handled the whole Las Vegas traffic (not that there is much at 9:30am) but none the less, it was a compliment and I was going to take it.
Breakfast...I LOVE breakfast. Especially when I don't have to be the one making it. The Buffet at The Rio is so good. They have a little of this and that for everybody. It didn't matter what I was craving because they had it all. Me, I had bacon, eggs, fruit, french toast with hot maple syrup, coffee, and a diet soda...I had it all; two helpings of the bacon. It was fabulous! I wanted to sit there and wait for the food to digest in my stomach so I could go back for more (spoken like a true Big Girl). I told John that we had to go back there the next day too; he agreed and we did!

After breakfast it was time to get back in the car and make our way to RAPPORT Leadership Retreat in Alamo, Nevada which is about an hour and a half to two hours away from Las Vegas.Sorry for the following vagueness but, Rapport is something that, in all honesty, I am not sure how to explain. Since I have never participated in the training and because the participants are sworn to secrecy as to what they did or learned, I truly can't tell you what it is all about. What I can say is that what I saw at the graduation was amazing, moving, and encouraging. If you want to learn more about Rapport I encourage you to take a look at the website!

The drive to Alamo was a nice one. Peaceful, I forgot what it was like to just drive and not have to listen to screaming kids in the background. The only bad thing about having to drive the entire way myself is that I couldn't knit. I knew that I had the Never Ending Sock to finish but I simply HAD to drive. See, poor John's little potty problem reared it's little head about 20 minutes outside of Alamo. He was squirming around his seat like he had ants in his pants. I felt so bad for him...I totally know how that feels.

However, when I offered my sympathy he looked at me like I was an idiot. I can't figure out why though. All I told him was that I knew exactly how his stomach felt because that is exactly how mine gets when I walk into a yarn store. I get so excited that my gut starts to churn and I have to go to the bathroom within 15 minutes of entering the store. To me, isn't that a perfect example of what he was going through...what? :-)

Anyway, we finally get to Alamo and we stop at the gas station/grocery store/fast food joint/rest stop. Yep, this town is so small that all those things are wrapped up into one. John goes into the bathroom and I don't see him for 30 minutes. I decided that I would buy some wet wipes (because you never know), a 12 pack of coca-cola (because I was not going to pay $5.00 to have one sent by room service back in the room!), and another pack of diarrhea medicine. Then, I went back to the car and knit on my sock until John came out of the bathroom looking like he had just ridden a bull for 8.9 seconds and the bull won.

I asked him how he was feeling and he looked at me again, like I was an idiot for even asking. "I am so sorry baby!" I said to him with my hand on his thigh. He then told me that he was in the bathroom getting ready to 'release the demons' when a couple of other guys walked in to use the urinal. John, being modest and all (which I completely don't understand since he can rip ass at the drop of a hat at home) tries to hold 'it' in until the guys leave. He said that his legs were shaking, he was biting his lip, he had beads of sweat dripping down his face, and his stomach felt like it was fighting the battle of Armageddon! He was about to blow before the guys got out when he was lucky enough to have one of the other toilets flush right then. AWE, midst the cover of the flushing noise John let out some of the turbulent war raging on in his gut. He said that it was just after the release that the other occupants left the bathroom and he was left to do his business.

I was laughing so hard I thought I was going to wet myself! The whole scene reminded me of American Pie . "It's not funny, Marlaina!" he said, but it really was...I just couldn't help but laugh! John started to laugh with me and between the laughter I managed to hear him say, " I didn't think it was ever going to end".

Okay, enough about that. We made it to the Rapport executive retreat and attended the graduation which started at 1:30, lasted for an hour then resumed again at 3:30. For that hour I was sitting on the couch in the front room of this cabin, talking to John, enjoying the conversation and all but all I could think about was that I had my knitting in the car and that was a perfect time to work on it. When I asked John if he would mind he asked me politely if I would just hold off from knitting for the time being and he would drive on the way home so I could knit then. Seemed reasonable to me so I agreed.

Since we were on the subject, I thought it was the perfect time to throw out there that I had wanted to see if there were any yarn shops in Vegas. "But", I said, " I know you don't want to really go to one of those." Long pause...

"Sure, why not". WHAT, did that just come out of John's mouth? You have got to be kidding me! This from the man who walks into my office, sees all the yarn and says "so that is where all my money goes"; this from the man who thinks you should only buy a knitting or crochet book if you need it; this from a man who thinks I have enough yarn to last me the rest of my life; this from the get the point!

I was so excited that I had to go and find a phone book to find any yarn shops in Vegas. I noticed some pay phones hanging on the wall across the room so I started to jump up out of my seat. Now, do you remember what I was wearing? An asymmetrical skirt right? Well, the chair I was sitting in was a leather chair with a large cushion to sit on. The problem was that when I sat on said cushion it curled up around my butt. So, when I got up out of the chair, all the air went back into the cushion and said cushion went back into place properly laying flat against the took the long corner of my skirt with it! Two steps away from the chair I noticed that I was leaving half of my clothes behind! MY JAW DROPPED! Okay, I know I am in Vegas but I am not interested in stripping, thank you! I turned around quickly, grabbed my skirt and pulled it back into place as fast as I could. THANK GOD I had my full body girdle on and no body saw anything; that is except John. Who said, " Now that is was I like to see, you so excited your clothes are coming off!" (only a man!)
John right after the Stripping Incident

I told him that everybody just about got more than they bargained for at this graduation. Man, the things that happen to me! Well, it was all worth it since I was able to get a phone book and locate two yarn shops. I jotted down the phone numbers and the addresses and planned on calling them later to verify their location. After that it was time to finish the graduation ceremony and I am pleased to say that I stayed fully clothed the whole time (*sigh of relief*).

John kept his word and on the ride back to Vegas he drove while I sat in the backseat, drinking my coke and knitting on my socks. I just love it when I get to relax and knit while somebody else is driving!

When we finally got back to Vegas it was 6:30 and we were famished! We all knew that we wanted to eat at Lawry's Prime Rib

so we drove straight there. If you have never been to a Lawry's and there is one in your HAVE to go! You know the Lawry's seasoning salt and stuff? That is who owns these wonderful restaurants. The whole decor is in 1950's -60's, Frank Sinatra...Tony Bennett-esk. Really, the whole atmosphere is just great! When we got there we were lucky in that there was only a 20 minute wait. Perfect amount of time for John to spend in the bathroom. That is right...his poor stomach was acting up, again. It acted up all through dinner. It was actually perfect that the hostess sat us right next to the bathroom because John kept having to get up and go to it.

Mike and John at Lawry's

He couldn't even finish his meal! That is when you know John is not feeling well. Mike (John's was his graduation from Rapport) and I kept trying to make light of the situation but it was apparent that John just wanted to go back to the hotel.

So, there went our evening plans. We all were intending to go out on the town, do a little gambling, a little drinking, have a little fun but instead I drove Mike to the Luxor to drop him off (that is where he was staying) and John and I went back to our suite and fell asleep @ 9:30 pm.

John took some more medicine and thought that if he could get a little rest maybe his body would feel better. I wasn't too worried about gambling or anything but I did want to at least see the hotel before we left. So, he and I agreed that we would try and get up around 3:30 am, go downstairs and enjoy ourselves.

I woke up at 3:30 and he was out like a light so I didn't have the heart to wake him up. Instead, I just rolled over and went back to sleep. At 6:00 we both woke up, got dressed and went downstairs. The first thing we did was go to the concierge desk to have them get online to check us into our flight (namely, pick our seats before we got to the airport so we didn't have the same incident as we did flying out to Vegas). And imagine our surprize when working at the desk was Colorado Springs! We thanked her for the gorgeous room and she graciously checked us into our 1:30 flight.

It was after that, at 7:30 in the morning on the day we are meant to leave (which happens to be St. Patricks Day) we are finally going to do a little gambling. Can you believe it...all that time and we hadn't so much as even dropped a nickel in a slot! I bellied up to the Craps table and really enjoyed playing for about two hours. I lost $40.00 but hey...not bad right? Why didn't I stay and play more? Don't you remember? I had a Yarn Store to find!

We went back to the room, packed our things, checked out over the phone, got to the car, drove to the Rio for breakfast then I started to drive East on Flamingo to the first Yarn Store I had found in the phone book...Two Crazy Ladies Yarn Shop. Excited doesn't even begin to describe what I was feeling!

I got the the two cross streets where the shop was supposed to be and drove around the shopping center looking for it...NOTHING! I drove around again, thinking that I had missed it...again, nothing! I could not believe this was happening to me. The one time my husband agrees to-take-me-to-a-yarn-shop and I can't find it! I drove across the street to a 7-11 and asked the attendants inside if they new of the shop. Of course not...then,
I remembered that I had their phone numbers written down from the day before I tried to call them. Number disconnected; DAMN!

I panic for a minute thinking that I am really not going to be able to go to a yarn shop in Vegas when I notice a second number to a different yarn shop that I also had found in the phone book. I dial the number, praying with the push of each button, sending good vibes through the phone to the other end...'pick up the phone; pick up the phone'...

"Hello, I was just calling to make sure you are still open before I drive all the way over there and you are not there anymore. Cause, you see that just happened to me and I am from out of town, and my husband said I could go to a yarn shop and I just want to find one that is open before my plane leaves!" I said all in one breath!
"Yes, we are open. And it is a good thing you called because we have moved locations and the address in the phone book is incorrect." Whoa, crisis averted! The lady gave me the correct directions which happed to not be far from where I was. I started that mini van and headed towards Gail Knits!

When I got there John told me I only had ten minutes. So, what do I do, I go, I look and I buy!
Because there was not really any good sock yarn that I wanted I chose to get two hanks of the New Vickie Howell Yarn Love (ever since I met Vickie at the Yarn Tasting I have wanted this yarn) and because the Yarn Harlot is talked about this book and is making her husband a Gansey, I got this book (even though John thinks I have enough books I thought getting this one would be easy to shrug off by saying I plan on making him one...could you imagine, I think his chest is like 55 inches!). AND, since it was still their grand opening at their new location I got 15% off my total so I saved $7.50 (beat that Crazy Ladies). The lady working the counter at Gail Knits told me that the first store I went to had closed in January due to mis management of the stock...whatever that means.

I was so happy when I left the store! I even got out of there in time for us to stop and fill up the mini van with gas before we dropped it off at Hertz.

John and I filling up the mini van at the gas station.

Funning thing is that the whole time I was driving to the Yarn Shop John was looking out the window for the location of this
He watches this show on TV about this particular car dealership and he wanted to see the place I guess. So imagine our shock when just above the gas station where we were filling up was this billboard. I told John that was as close to Towbin Dodge as he was going to get and seemed to be okay with that. Thank goodness because it was time to get to the airport!

We checked our bags in at the counter, again, having to switch around clothes in the suitcase right there in front of everybody. However, this time the lady helping us was much more helpful! We had good seats, Row 3 seats D and E. Now, there was enough time for us to have a bathroom break (John was starting to have trouble again) and wait in the hour security line.

To the amazement of almost all the people around me I talked to John, I stood in line, I walked when I needed to walk and I stopped when I needed to stop all while I was knitting the Never Ending Socks. I had to finish those dumb socks before I made it home; that way they could be my Finished In Vegas Socks!

Finally, we got up to the front of the security thing and put all our things on the conveyor belt to be x-rayed and I walked through the metal detector. All clear, no body had to look in my bag so John and I picked up our things and went on to the gate. While waiting for the plane I finished the Never Ending Sock! Mission accomplished!

At last, we boarded the plane and sat comfortably (I use that term loosly as once again, the seats are small and we are not) in our seats. The plane took off and I pulled out my Ziploc bag with my trekking sock in it to work on...the same Ziploc bag I had to pull out of my knitting bag, in front of security guards, when I was stopped in Denver at the security line for having a small tube of cover-up makeup in my makeup case rather than a Ziploc container (note: the tube of cover up was in my purse, not in my knitting bag. So the security personnel never asked me to open my knitting bag, I just knew I had a Ziploc in there there I could use to put my makeup in rather than have it confiscated). The same Ziploc bag that had went through TWO security x-ray manchines, one in Denver and one in Vegas. Therefore, imagine my surprize with I noticed this while I was sitting on the plane...

Do you see it? Look closely, click on the picture to enlarge it. That is right, that there ladies and gents is a full size pair, larger than 2" pair of scissors! I felt like a criminal on the plane! Honestly, I didn't know they were there! Quickly, I put the bag away and pulled out my new book to read the rest of the ride home. How about that security, huh? False sense?

We landed in Denver at 4:30pm. Right on time. Went on our mission to pick up the kiddo's (who had a blast being away from mom and dad) and made our way home.

Well, that was my trip. I hope you enjoyed the story. I know it was long, but I warned you it would be. I can't wait until we can go someplace alone again. This time, I will make sure John and I DON'T eat anything questionable. for John's...problem. As soon as we got home he was feeling much better. Go figure!


amanda said...

What a fun story. Glad you finished the socks!

The scissors thing pisses me off...I have issues with airport security and this confirms my opinions.

Melody said...

wow. what a post. i could only read chunks at a time, and umm. your hubby ok with posting his horrid story? too funny. the scissors... go figure. and you get stopped for make up & lame ass things..

Adrienne " A little dramatic at times" said...

ROFLOL!!!!! Too funny!

Marly said...

John knows I am writing about the trip but I don't think he knows how much detail I am including :-)

Yeah, my mom loved the socks too, LOL!


Meredith said...

Wow, poor hubby's tummy! Glad it still seemed like a fun trip and you got some yarn/knit time, and a little time at the tables too!

Vickie Howell said...

Thanks for picking up some of the VHC LOVE yarn. Can't wait to see what you make out of it! xo, Vickie

Kara said...

Sounds like a good time - sorry that John didn't feel good atleast you got to get out of town for a bit -

Marly said...

HOLY CRAP, do you see who left me a comment?


My day just got GOOD!