I didn't sign up for this

October 14, 2008
I moved to the desert for warm temperatures and sunshine. I did not sign up for cold fronts in October, also known as the perfect weather month. Normally, October is beautiful, with daytime highs in the 80’s and night time lows in the upper 50’s, until the 31st anyway, then it’s a gamble. Mother Nature pulled a cruel joke on us this weekend. We went from 90 degrees to 60 is a couple days time. Talk about a shock to the system. I haven’t been warm since Wednesday. Saturday morning I woke up absolutely frozen, it was only 63 degrees upstairs, downstairs was a bit warmer at 68. Outside temps topped out at 58. I thought it warm up as the day went on, but the cool temps and arctic winds stayed put all weekend.

Despite the cold, we made the most of the weekend and we played tourist. Our friend Shane came in from Phoenix, with his friend, Carlos. Carlos was in town for the Lowrider Super Show at Cashman Event Center. They both stayed with us. This was my first peek into the lowrider world, it was interesting,not really my style, but I can appreciate all the work that goes into the cars. I spotted many nice rides when we tagged along to get the car set up for the competition. Carlos later won 3rd place in his class, he has a nice pimped out 90’s Fleetwood Cadillac. One of his buddies' damaged his car when taking it off the trailer; he wasn’t able to enter it in the competition. We offered to keep the car at house over the weekend. Funny to see a pimped out lowrider in front of the house, never thought I’d see the day.

Saturday afternoon we hung out at TI’s sports book, watching games, betting on the ponies, drinking beers and making our football bets. We got the itch to play blackjack so we went in search of $5 tables. There was only one, a handicapped table. But the open seats were reserved. We opted to leave and head over to Sahara. It’s not the greatest place, but for whatever reason we’ve enjoyed playing blackjack there since the days of $1 blackjack.

The first table, Shane watched as Frank and I got slaughtered by the coldest dealer I’ve come across. We lost our buy-in in minutes; we left the main pit and went back to the tables between the poker room and Nascar CafĂ©. Found a friendly dealer (even the relief dealer was great), we each sat down and made ourselves at home. I lost my buy-in, again, in minutes and figured it just wasn’t my night. The drinks were flowing so I happily watched and cheered on Frank and Shane. They played for hours, we had a lot of fun, the dealers loved us, it was a great time, which was made even better when they both walked away winners.

We walked over to the Stratosphere to try our luck there. Not sure why, because it really is a waste unless you’re riding the rides or going to the observation deck. We forgot this in our drunken stupor. We did a lap around the pit, they had one $5 table open, 6:5. No thank you. We left, and headed downtown. Hunger struck, we went to Golden Gate’s diner. Patty Melt’s all around, they used to be so good, but these days they’re pretty crummy. Service was better than in the past, I’ll give them credit for that. After we ate, we walked over to Vegas club. We weren’t digging the vibe, I was tired, it was cold outside; we were parked there so we called it a night.

Sunday the cold continued. I was up early to prep for the football party we hosted. We watched all the games. It was amazing how many had us on edge until the final seconds. Great day for football, not such a great day for our bets, our parlays were toast after some of those last minute outcomes. We played cards, drank beer, grazed on snacks all day. Good fun. Everyone left after the Chargers game. Then, Frank, Shane and I went to Ellis Island for ribs. Tasty, as always. I went home after dinner, but the guys took a beating at Excalibur, Luxor, Sahara and TI before crawling in at four in the morning.

Yesterday, most of the day was spent curled up under blankets watching tv. Before Shane and Carlos left town, they invited us to check out the hop competition held at a park up North. We checked it out. In the past this event has been held after the awards show, but the last couple years there’s been shots fired. Bad blood between Las Vegas gangs, so I’m told. Anyway, this year they switched it up and the location wasn’t shared until the morning of. It seemed to work, everyone was cool; the crowds were mild while we were there. We waited around forever for the first match-up. It was over in a minute, it was neat while it lasted. The crowd ate it up. I was cold, and we didn’t feel like hanging around until the next match-up so we said good-bye to the guys and headed home. I snuggled up under the covers, and didn’t come out until we hopped in the spa. At least, that’s still nice. It was neat to watch the steam rise last night under the moonlit sky. Hopefully, this cruel joke will end soon, I’m over the cold. Bring back the 80’s, please…

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