…on my Spring Vacation by Beth.
Jay and I have been in Vegas the past few days, visiting with friends, seeing Cirque du Soleil’s “O”, taking a helicopter tour of the Hoover Dam and the Grand Canyon, oh yeah, and after 7 ½ years of dating we got married or more precisely “hitched” in keeping with the name of our wedding package “Let’s Get Hitched!” We are nothing, if not tasteful. I’m sad to say that Elvis did not sing to us nor did we get married on the bridge of the Enterprise (I was really pushing for the Enterprise, but there’s always hope for vow renewal and we did get to have lunch at Quark’s and got chatted up by a Klingon so it wasn’t a complete wash). I even came away with one of my souvenir prizes – a t-shirt (that I can never wear out of the house) that reads “I’m with illogical” complete with arrow. How can you not love the nerdiness of it?
I’ll just make my way down the list:
Cirque du Soleil’s “O” – it was both beautiful and surreal. I can’t really add much else to it other than to say that if you get a chance to see a Cirque du Soleil performance, you should take advantage of it. Of course, my favorite part of the Cirque du Soleil story was the shop dedicated to the show and the over eager clerk, Roger. Roger was chatty, gregarious and quite simply outrageous – the kind of guy who can pull off a pompadour. He filled us with all sorts of factoids (the pool in “O” is 26 ft. deep and the high dive was 63 feet above the water). He told us about the other shows, his friends who perform, his family in Austin and then made calls to get times and costs for other shows. Roger then took me aside to show me a few of the other Cirque du Soleil shows that are currently being worked on for other cities. The one opening in New York this winter is called “Wintuk”.
The wedding – well, the day of the wedding, we had to pick up our license in downtown Vegas. Graceful me fell into the cab – I won’t even try to explain what I thought I was doing, but in I fell dragging my leg along the step. Let’s just say I’m still sporting a purple leg shiner and much ice was involved to get the swelling down before the wedding. (Since I’m not someone who bruises easily, I’ve managed to turn my whining about it into quite a show. I know Jay can’t get enough of me pointing it out. I may have to wake him shortly to show him that yes, it’s still there winking at him.) As you make your way to the courthouse, you run the gauntlet of pamphlet handlers and street carnies (for lack of a better description) – they yell at you, get in your path and try to get you to stop and use whatever service they’re hocking. They’re adorable and if I ever need to rent a motel by the hour, they’ll be my first stop.
Vin, the limo driver, picked us up in a white stretch limo. (Hey, we travel in style.) We get there and leap on the marriage conveyer belt only this one was moving a bit slow. According to Vin we were his first pick-up of the day. In about 10 minutes we got thrown in, marched down the aisle, married and had pictures taken before Vin ran out the door to take us back to the hotel. I think we spent more time in the limo than in the “chapel”.
The next day was the helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon with a champagne lunch. Off we head to our little helicopter with the least chatty of all the pilots as six helicopters prepare to take off. I was seated next to a nice gal from Illinois, Pukey McBarfsalot who immediately reached over and grabbed one of the two barf bags she used along the trip. I spent 45 minutes worried about when she was going to blow and couldn’t get lost in the terrain. Then finally, around the Hoover Dam it happened and I spent the next few minutes wondering if that particular smell was going to start a chain reaction while watching her out of the corner of my eye take gentle swipes at her mouth. Trust me, the air in the helicopter can’t blow on you hard enough.
Thank GOD we landed. I went the opposite way of Pukey to enjoy the sites I’d missed on the descent. We had our light lunch, but I didn’t eat that much since I was worried about Pukey’s powers of persuasion. Of course, Pukey ate a lot of her lunch which made me grumble – good idea there, go back up on a full stomach Princess Motion Sickness. At least she took the peppermint. Then back to the helicopter we went… and she reached for her second bag. Jay and I had switched seats so I had my face plastered against the glass with the air blowing directly on me. Jay later pointed out that she didn’t need the 3rd bag her friend provided – may small wonders never cease. Overall though, the tour was amazing and beautiful – something I wouldn’t mind repeating on say a private helicopter.
Yesterday morning we headed to the airport to the tunes of Boney M’s “Rasputin” – I never heard of this Australian sensation and they’re now hands down my new cheesy favorite “Ra ra Rasputin Russia’s greatest love machine” – I mean, how could you go wrong with lyrics like that? I should have given the cabby a larger tip for introducing us to this fine band. Forget Dylan, Guthrie, Marley – just sit back and enjoy.
…and that was our Spring vacation.