Learning When to Walk

With only a short drive from Kingman to Las Vegas, I decided to make the trek on my motorcycle.  What should have been a short ride turned long as I missed my exit off interstate 40 and took the longer “scenic” route through California.  My detour turned colder and windier than I was dressed for as I got into higher elevations and caught myself shivering as I rode.  Although a much longer ride than planned, it was good time for me to do some much needed reflecting.  Now that we have traveled down the east coast, around the gulf of Mexico, and across the west almost to California, I’ve been starting to think, what next?  How do I want to use the rest of my time after we’ve spent some time on the west coast?

As I descended closer and closer to Las Vegas the weather turned to a beautiful warm sunny day.  The air started to feel like a warm blanket rather than frigid needles.  I arrived to meet up with Ryan, Mom and Shannon at the Club De Soleil, a time share given to us for the week by good friends of the family, Dan and Karen.  This is the way to experience Vegas; a great two bedroom apartment just down the street from the main strip.   What an amazing gift…thank you so much!

After taking some time to rest and get my core temperature back up from my detour, we headed down to the Las Vegas strip for dinner.  My cousin Michelle recommended the Bellagio’s buffet, so that’s exactly where we went.  This was my first time in Las Vegas and I was blown away at the no expense spared mentality of the casinos.  The buffet was no exception with just about everything you could ask for: Kobe beef, crab legs, sushi, sword fish, great pasta dishes, fruits and cheeses, and a huge desert station.  I don’t know what the best tactic is to maximize the buffet, fasting beforehand or eating slow/fast, but I walked away feeling like I wished I could have eaten more.

After dinner we stopped in to the New York, NY Casino to do some small stakes gambling at a blackjack table.  Mom started by watching as Ryan and I played a few hands until she better understood the game.  She never did enter, just as Ryan and I shouldn’t have.  We were both up at points, Ryan by much more than me, but in typical gambling style we didn’t know when to walk away.

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About bhoefen

Going on a road trip.
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6 Responses to Learning When to Walk

  1. Cousin Mike says:

    I’m sure that you and Ryan playing cards looked something like this:

  2. Cousin Michelle, Mario, and Simona says:

    SO glad you checked out Bellagio! We felt the same way- just wished we could have eaten more! If you are really adventurous there is a roller coaster drop off the Stratosphere hotel at the top of the strip. The old city is really neat too (just north of the strip) you can see the real texas holdem’ going on and celebrity poker.
    Have fun guys! Wish we were there with you!
    Lots of love to you!
    PS- what’s next?? you still need to explore Hawaii, Alaska, and could do a route home through VanCouver and Canada (some amazing scenery!). So many options!

  3. Makiko says:

    Hey Bret! The sushi comment reminded me of a hilarious picture that always makes me smile, of you eating sushi with a fork. Man, those crab legs look yummy. Thanks for keeping Ryan from getting into too much trouble during the trip, by the way…although I realize what they say about “what happens in Vegas…”

  4. Reggie & Mary Lee says:

    That buffet looks sooooooooooooo good! Are you going to see a Cirque du Soleil production while there? I can’t imagine your mom not pushing for one – they are incredible and I have heard the underwater one in Vegas is amazing. As for traveling further – how about finding a flight to Maui when you hit the west coast. It is a beautiful island and you all would love it. Alaska is beautiful too but wait for the spring to hit first! Dan & Karen – what a great gift… and I was thinking about telling tales about you in high school… so what happened in Livonia stays in Livonia!

  5. Cousin Geoffrey says:

    Hey guys! I’m completely loving your adventure! It sounds like you’ve got an amazing home base and could be staying in Sin City for a bit… Wanted to pass on a few things that I enjoyed while in the area:

    1) Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is just West of the city – beautiful rock formations – a huge rock climbing area (fun to watch)! There is camping in the area as well.
    http://www.americansouthwest.net/nevada/red_rock_canyon/nca.html

    2) Hoover dam is 1.5 hours away I believe (back toward the Grand Canyon).

    3) Area 51 is about 3 hours north through some very wild country. I didn’t make it out there, but hope to next time I’m in the area. It’s about a 2.5 mile hike round trip up Tikaboo pike for a view of the ‘area’. Could be an interesting day (or night)!
    http://www.birdandhike.com/Hike/Other_Areas/Tikaboo/_Tikaboo.htm

    4) Last, and most importantly, they have Qdoba in Las Vegas, too!! Now remember…get the Chicken Queso Burrito w/ Pinto Beans, Cheese, Sour Cream and Medium Salsa (the green stuff). I also recommend the Mr. Pibb (2011) with you meal.
    Closest to the strip is: 5045 W. Tropicana, Unit #115 -> plug ‘er into the GPS and go!!…Now!!! Ryan – the favorite cousin offer still stands if you bring me 1 (or 2).
    http://www.qdoba.com/locations.aspx

    I wish I were back traveling with you guys! Bret – it’s a good thing we warmed you up with video poker back at the ‘Alligator Crossing Casino’ in Homma, LA! Vegas could have been a bit of a shock without that!

    Have a blast!!

    Cousin Geoffrey

  6. Reggie & Mary Lee says:

    Reggie said to tell you that you can rent motorcycles in Maui and “The Road to Hanna” would be great on a bike!

    “Cousin Mike” – loved The Gambler clips!!! ML

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