Friday, December 20, 2013

What Happens in Vegas ...

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.  Well, not really.  It usually ends up on You Tube, Facebook and other places on the internet.  In some cases it might even end up on a reality show.  Or in a blog, like this one.  I enjoy visiting Las Vegas.  We have fun.  This time was even better because we met up with our son, his friend and her family.  Awesome people.  And it was great spending time with them all.  It was also fun for the same reasons that it's always fun - the diversity, amazing entertainment options, incredible food, nice weather, unusual cultural experiences...there's even good art to be found.  One of the major hotels is featuring an exhibit called Warhol Out West, which we visited on our previous trip. Included are some of Andy Warhol's most famous original paintings and prints, as well as a very cool display of his Polaroid instant photographs.  Those of you who know me are familiar with my more than casual interest in film photography, and I was fascinated by Warhol's Polaroid portraits.  Attempting to put myself in that exact moment when a picture was taken is a stimulating exercise. That's what I do with art, my own or other's, try to make it interactive and personal.

I also try to find art in unusual places. Each time we visit I'm drawn to a location overlooking a particular section of Las Vegas Boulevard, better known as "the Strip." There's something about this view that appeals to me in a curious sort of way. 

The symmetry of the traffic. The glow of neon lights in various shapes on either side of the street. And what about the people in all the cars?  Where are they going to, or coming from?  My imagination races...until a familiar voice snaps me out of it with a "Come on! What are you looking at anyway?"  I usually don't try to explain due to the fact that I actually don't know what I'm looking at.  I guess I'm looking at...everything.   But I can never quite take it all in.  The scale confounds me.

This was the first time we've been there in December, so things seemed even more festive. Even the chorus girls were all decked out in a holiday theme.

And the decorations at the Bellagio Conservatory were incredible.

I think the main reason I enjoy traveling to Vegas has to do with the fact that it's such a treat for the senses. All of them.  Even feel.  Most days everything is warm, dry and crisp to the touch.  Nights are often cool and the air is fresh and a little sweet.  Then there is the sound of the casinos.  I won't deny that it is alluring.  The music is loud, the machines are bright, shiny and lit up like the Strip itself.  Add the frequent "WOOHOO!" or high fives at a card table close by and you've got the full effect.

It's funny how I like solitary places so much but still enjoy visiting a hot spot like Sin City where there is very little solitude.  What there is, however, is a lot of excitement and potential for what might happen.  Maybe it's that potential for a new adventure that keeps drawing me in.  In any case, I'll be back.  And maybe next time I'll bring back a story or two that may have stayed there in the past.  Because sometimes there's a story that is just too good not to tell.