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Saturday, May 10, 2014

Flusher Fun Time and the Misery Miles Mall

Day 13 - Part 2

There were a few chores I had to do today. I had to pack up my stuff. I had to get over to the Downtown Grand, where my host had set up a 2 night comp. I had to check in. Get back to the Cal. Haul my shit over to the Grand. Drink and gamble.

This would be facilitated by the 2:00pm late checkout I scored. But first... first... it was Flusher Fun time - oh YEAH.

First, I checked google and found out there was a Wal-Mart down by the airport. It all made sense now. I could do a big loop to the various destinations I had in mind.

I could head straight down Fremont to Eastern Avenue and cruise south right to Wal-Mart - which backed onto the airport. Off I went.

Oh what a journey it was! Oh what sights, and surprises I saw. Like this one, the fabled Pair-a-Dice motel. Surely Las Vegas had to have one, and surely it did!

Unfortunately, it looks like the Pair-a-dice crapped out with a big seven, but you never know, it might still be operating.

Here's a much better picture of the sign, courtesy of Classic Las Vegas, which is a very cool website. If you are interested in Vegas history, check 'em out.

I made my destination - Wal-Mart - and went in search of the Precious. Which in this case, was some knock-off chewable gas pills. I'd stumbled on them during the last trip trip of doom. At home I've paid almost ten bucks for 36 of these little stomach relief gut-bombs. And here Wal-mart sells the exact same stuff - well, the same compound anyway, in a no-nonesense bottle - for the princely sum of 86 cents.
See for yourself - these bastards charge $8.79!
I searched high and low, and in-between, and I came up empty. The normally benevolent Wal-Mart had forsaken me.

I shuffled back to the car and drove further south, where I found a great parking lot right beside the airport. I was actually able to see what I thought was the Quad Queen's Rouge brand aircraft, which would be at the gate nearest this place. I watched some planes land for a while and pondered going to the viewing area on the other side of the runway, but I decided to get going.
Flight 69, comin' in.
I'd done my research carefully and knew where the two pillars are that once marked McCarran field back in the 40s. I took a wrong turn - too early. And then breezed right by them yet again, too late to do anything about it. The last thing I wanted to do was be making uturns and bouncing up and down the strip, which can be very aggravatin' drivin'. I decided to let it go.
I saw these for 300 milliseconds.
Onward. I did a bit of exploring around the edges of the airport. I like to just drive around and see stuff. And boy, what interesting stuff I saw!

This is where old roller coaster go to die.
I figure I was looking at a combination of pipes - aka plumbing - and maybe the roller coaster at MGM. Those curved pieces sure looked like roller coaster tracks to me. And, they were green.

If this all seems odd to you - just remember - even without the knock-off anti-gas pills, I was saving a ton of money by not gambling, with the added bonus of getting a good tan on my left arm as I drove around with the window open. Savvy, no?

Did someone say gambling?

I wound my way up the back roads... up to Tropicana... onto Koval... further up, up, up.... until I reached Planet Hollywood.

Yes, the strip!

I'd kind of liked the place the last time I'd walked through and thought I'd give them some play and see if any room offers come my way. I do like to stay on the strip from time to time. In fact, I have an idea for a whole different kind of trip to do sometime later this year.

However... I'd learned a lesson that had been rattling in the back of my mind, and which I'd forgotten... I parked in the parking structure and walked to the casino.

GOD HELP you if you had to schlep your luggage from the parking structure to the casino. You are death-marched for approximately six miles through the never-ending and marginally interesting Miracle Six Mile Death Mall. Jesus GOD it is a long way. It must have taken me... 8 minutes. Okay that doesn't sound like much, but it's just stupid. I can park at the Cal and be in my room in 1 minute.

Lesson learned. 

When you go to Planet Ho'
Don't walk six miles to the Flo'
Give yourself a break today
Valet, valet, valet, valet!!!!

Meanwhile, I was generating a pretty roaring hunger as it was getting on into late morning... and then I remembered. Yes! That was it! 

Tacos El Gordo.

Just the other side of Wynn, and on my way back downtown. The day was just getting better and better. I saddled up to play a little VP at the bar, grooved to the rock tunes, and pondered my first trip ever to Tacos El Gordo on the strip and how incredibly wonderful it would be!
Planet Ho'
And again Planet Ho'
My hunger built even further as I hiked back through the Misery Miles mall. I had to stop twice to make camp, find firewood and potable water, and snuggle in for the night on a bed of pine needles. Thank goodness my fire bundle smoldered throughout the days, so I could boil some thin pine tar tea at the end of each gruelling day.

Finally, on the third day, I made the last few miles to my car, threw the fire bundle in the trunk with the last of my pemmican, and headed off to Tacos El Gordo.


    1. And to avoid the soul-crushing Strip, next time visit the original location of Tacos El Gordo on Charleston. Love the atmosphere and the crowd there.

    2. The roller coaster parts you saw are actually Speed!: The Ride from the Sahara.


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