The past week, I had the absolute privilege of spending 7 nights in Las Vegas. It was incredible and bizarre, and I’m still dimly in shock that it’s even a real place.
The intense heat was the first thing I noticed. I understood that I was headed to the desert in summer, but I didn’t realise just how hot it could get. My idea of a hot day is 25°C, so trying to cope with 48°C was near impossible. There was a constant spray of water mist coming from most buildings (in an effort to stop people from keeling over, I imagine).
The week started with seeing “The Mentalist” Gerry McCambridge, who was truly astounding. Among other baffling acts, he asked my mother (by name) why she hadn’t got a new dog yet and successfully predicted numbers chosen by randomly selected audience members. After his show, we bought his autobiography where he discusses mentalism and his life. I’m cynical and sceptical, but I can totally believe his brand of magic (plus I have long adored Patrick Jane, so meeting the original Mentalist was wicked).
Later in the week, I saw David Copperfield – a type of magic I obviously don’t believe, but wow he does it well. I was that frustrated kind of mad after the show, because I knew he didn’t literally make a dinosaur appear out of thin air, but I could not fathom how on earth he made it seem like he did. I also saw “Jersey Boys” and “Rock of Ages” (both were wonderful; my secret love of musical theatre is not-so-secret anymore), met Siegfried of “Siegfried & Roy” fame, and managed to only gamble $2 the entire week, even though there were slot machines literally everywhere. I don’t know why Vegas thought that it was necessary to have slot machines at the airport, but I feel like Vegas doesn’t obey anyone else’s rules of what’s acceptable.
The absolute highlight of the week, though, was seeing Britney Spears. As I mentioned last post, the first album I ever bought was “Oops!.. I Did It Again”. I grew up listening to Britney’s music and idolising her. I haven’t really listened to her since I was a kid, but I’ll forever have a soft spot for her. Britney’s concert was unlike anything I’d ever seen before. Other than Ellie Goulding, pop shows haven’t ever been in my life, so having dance numbers and costume changes is pretty new territory for me, concert-wise. I had to explain to my father that the point of seeing Britney isn’t to hear a great singing voice – it’s the spectacle she makes of her music. Plus I don’t think any of us ever expected that we would see Britney Spears straddle a giant guitar on a Wednesday night.
Vegas was filled with a lot of other bizarre things to a small-town kiwi like me: a cupcake ATM, a half-sized Eiffel Tower (the reason it’s not full size is purely due to the proximity of the airport), smoking permitted inside, replicas of cities inside casinos (because every location I went was also a casino). It was a beautiful week but as much fun as I had, I can’t say I’ll miss it. I’ll absolutely go back, but for now it’s a sweet relief to be back in Vancouver with its forgiving, moderate temperatures.