As part of "Reading Week" at a local elementary school. I volunteered to read to a second grade class yesterday. They were very cute and inquisitive. After reading The Stinky Cheese Man and other Fairly Stupid Tales the floor was opened to questions. Most were personal in nature. They were curious about my age, my job, where I worked and how long. They were most impressed that I was not afraid of heights, followed by the length of time at my job - 13 years. "WHOA!" The kids all shouted in unison. Perspective can be a funny thing. I've been at my job for more than a lifetime in their eyes. As for me, it's gone by in a blink of an eye.
The past thirteen years have been a wild ride.
In 2003, THEhotel at Mandalay Bay just opened. Now, it's been rebranded as The Delano. One of the first projects I worked on was Le Reve, which was later renamed the Wynn. I was thrilled that I'd have a hand - however, small - in shaping the future of the strip. Over the years, I watched as the Palazzo, Encore, CityCenter, and Cosmo went from drawings on paper to casting shadows on Las Vegas Blvd. I've seen the Aladdin become Planet Hollywood, Barbary Coast change to Bill's Gambin' Hall and eventually into Cromwell, and the Imperial Palace morph into the Linq. I've seen the dreams of Fontainebleau and Echelon shatter. I've said good-bye to the Frontier, Stardust, Sahara, Riveria, Boardwalk, and Westward Ho. I've most recently worked on Lucky Dragon and the T Mobile Arena. I eagerly await Resorts World and Alon.
Meanwhile, I married. Twenty-something quickly became thirty-something. Bought (and lost on) real estate. I led the way for my mom, brother and sister to also move to Las Vegas. And now, possibly my dad. Frank and I have suffered great sorrow and profound joy. We know sickness and cherish health. Poorer. Richer. We've learned volumes and still know nothing at all. We've traveled to Europe, Central and South America and still have the world to discover. We have dreamed big and continue to dream bigger.
The rest? Is unwritten.