Friday, March 29, 2013

spring break: just what I expected

Three days with family have already come and gone. Two uncles, two aunts, and two cousins from my Dad´s side of the family all gathered for a very welcoming family fest.

I can´t believe it´s been over two years since I´ve seen most of them!

What did we find to do in Las Vegas, you ask? Well, three of us ziplined over Fremont Street while the rest watched the show above. All of us went to the Mob Museum, to Ceasar´s Palace, and to both Wolfgang Puck´s and Emeril´s restaurant in MGM Grand. Uncle George, my mom, and I did a thrill ride on the very top of the Stratosphere, which turned out to be quite enjoyable (you know, having a full view over the Strip and free-falling to your death). Just kidding, but the Stratosphere is so high, I felt like I was in southeastern Wyoming with all the wind.

Did I mention I tried calves liver at Wolfgang Puck´s?? The portion was too much for me to handle for my first go at calf meat, but my Dad did say that that was the best calf liver he ever had. Glad he liked it. Oh, and I should mention that Puck has an all male wait staff.. I noticed it before the appetizers came out just because there were so many good-looking waiters (maybe UNLV Hospitality Management majors too??). Hmm, maybe it´s better that way. I remember serving food at a retirement center as a part-time job in high school and always having sore wrists from carrying those large trays of meals...

My Uncle George had free tickets to see Zarkana! Can you believe that?? Cirque du Soleil´s latest and greatest. The costumes and scenery were amazing. Even some of the acrobatics seemed Zarkana-specific. I have a feeling that nowhere else in the world you can find men wearing full-body suits with cloth balls attached while spinning in an over-sized wheel. No where else can you find a grown man in a baby outfit, but that was Mystere, I digress. It was definitely an award-winning performance, though I couldn´t give it five stars like my Uncle did. For a performance to get that kind of rating from me, it has to move me. I want to be in tears before I realize it. I´ve been desensitized to the Vegas shows. I´ve seen Jersey Boys, Mystere, Absinthe, The Rat Pack, and probably a few more. But I´ve also seen the Russians perform The Nutcracker in Lisboa. The novelty of that never wears off. I kind of feel bad for the guy that went with me. (I had met him in a hostel in Porto but we met up in Lisboa a few days later). It was beautiful. I was crying. He had never been to a ballet in his life. But he, Kristaps, was a good camper. (He´s actually coming to Vegas on business next week so we´ll go see a Cirque du Soleil of his choice then).

The rest of the family, except my Dad who was undoubtedly playing craps for the full two hours, saw Jersey Boys instead.

For now, I still carry around my Swiss map, hoping someone will want to know where exactly Lugano or Sankt Gallen is.

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