The Ice Cream Loving Gangster

Las Vegas Travel Blog

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At the Hard Rock Cafe. Margo is deep in thought contrasting and comparing the career stages of KISS and it's individual members. Or maybe she was reading the menu. I forget.

Friday, April 18, 2008


Today was our last day in Vegas and tonight we would be going home. But, we didn’t have to worry about that until late afternoon. Right now all we had to worry about was checking out and getting our car. We hadn’t seen our car since the afternoon of the 16th. Oh, well. I hadn’t missed it. We were up, showered, dressed, and packed early, 10:30AM.

Hard Rock Cafe-Las Vegas
That’s early by Las Vegas standards. Check out was 11, so we headed on down. We only packed on suitcase, but it was a duffle style and it was heavvvy. There was no way this sucker was going to make the 50 lb restriction. But, that was a problem for later. Right now I had to carry the damn thing down to the counter and then out to the valet area. Halfway through the casino a 20-something Aussie did his best to severe diplomatic relations with me, when I accidentally brushed him with my luggage. I said “Excuse Me” and he told me to F*ck Off. As he was standing in the dead center of the aisle doing nothing, and I had had to walk around him, I was a bit miffed. But I decided just to keep going. Besides I doubted I could raise my arms after carrying this damn bag, anyway. I was proud of myself for deducing his country of origin from only two words. I cheered myself further with the thought that if he was this pissed already (& not carrying luggage) he either lost a bunch of money. Or maybe his girlfriend was making sure only his right hand was having any fun on this trip.
Luv-It Frozen Custard. Apparently now I am the TravBuddy expert on the place!
Imagine what I could have come up with a little effort.


Check out went very smooth. It took all of two minutes, once we got there. Our car was another problem. We checked out on the south side of the Luxor, but we were told that we had valeted on the north side. About now I was wishing I had taken a swing at Steve Irvin’s ugly cousin. At least someone would be carrying me. Twelve hours later (that’s what my arms swear it was!) we got our car and I was finally able to relieve myself of my burden.


What to do now? Well we were hungry. I like to pick up a pilsner glass from any Hard Rock Café I stumble across.

Gangster and his Moll
We didn’t know exactly where we had to stumble to find the on in Vegas, but our rental car map took care of that and we headed north on The Strip. The trip down the strip was quick. We made a right on Paradise Rd and found the café pretty quick. The restaurant opened at 11 AM, and that had barely passed. We sat down and ordered our drinks. I asked for a Killians. Strike One. How about a Dos Equixs? I’ll check. Strike Two. So I settled for something completely different with a Stella from Belgium. Margo thinks like they taste like they all came from the same horse, so she looks at me and shakes her head. We place our food order. I ordered a Pig Sandwich with fries. Then it was off to check out the memorabilia.


We saw one of Elvis’ guitars.

Yah, I'm talkin'to you!
He had smashed it because it wouldn’t stay in tune. I’m sure that cured its stubbornness. There were full size likenesses of the four members of KISS. We saw many other things. It’s always fun to check out all of the stuff. HRCs always have music videos playing. I usually really like them, but the ones today made me feel old. Mainly because I would ask Margo “Who is that?” She would say “I don’t know” But, the beer was cold and the food was fine. So we ate and paid our bill.


As my primary reason for visiting was a pilsner glass we hit the gift shop. Margo bought me a shirt (Thanks Dear!) and finished her shopping by getting a shirt for the gal covering for her back home. We decided now was a great time for dessert and to finally get to Luv-It Frozen Yogurt. The directions we got yesterday worked perfectly. We arrived just before noon and found the place deserted.

She's packin' heat!
The sign on the door informed us that we were an hour early. Damn! If only we were in a city with unlimited diversions regardless of the day or time! One glance towards the southwest and the Stratosphere Tower gave us our new home away from home.


Margo and I stayed at the Stratosphere twice before and we liked it. It was a little more laid back, we thought the slots were looser, it was generally less busy, it has great thrill rides, and good shopping. We figured we could kill an hour there. Ten minutes later we were in the casino. As our wallets were not bare we decide to gamble a little more. We played slots and video poker for awhile, and then I decided I wanted to try something different.  I had never played roulette, outside of a video game, so I talked myself into trying it.

We hadn't seen our rental car since we parked it at the Luxor on Day 1
There was a table that had just one player so I bought $60 in chips and started placing bets. As we were in town celebrating our 21st anniversary I played 21 every bet. In a just world, it would have hit, and make a great story. I think I placed bets on about a dozen spins of the wheel and it never did. I didn’t only bet #21. I placed a number of single number bets, side-by-sides, and fours (I have no idea if I have the terminology right). I managed to not lose everything. On my last spin one of my singles hit and got me close to even, so I figured God was telling me that it was time for ice cream.


Who was I to question God? Margo had been watching me for the last 10 minutes, having had her own conversation with God, so as she was ready to call it gambling day, we left. It was well past 1 PM when we got back to Luv-It, so they had to be open.

Sunroof, cool!
They were! I am nothing if not persistent. Margo got a cup of vanilla & I got a two scoop cup of Chocolate. Nothing fancy, but you fall back on old standbys when you try a new shop. I liked my chocolate, but it was not the best I had ever tasted (That would be Good Times, a Colorado based burger chain). Margo’s vanilla, on the other hand was at least as good as I had ever tasted. We’ll likely be back.


In the combined 8 trips Margo and I have been to Vegas, neither of us had been to Circus Circus. There was just nothing that attracted us to the place. But, we were on the north end, and decided to give it try. We self parked and found our way in. The casino reminded us of Laughlin. Very subdued and not a lot of people playing. There were quite a few kids around, but that was not surprising.

Margo trying to escape
They are the one hotel/casino that markets families. We quickly found our way into the Adventuredome. That is a combination midway and carnival. Lots of ride and such. We had not intention of riding anything, and it wasn’t really busy. But, they had an Ole Time Photo Shoppe. It had been awhile since we had that done, and never with a gangster theme. Las Vegas and mobsters seemed like a good match, so we did.  The place was called Buffalo Old Time Photos. They did a good job. They had great costumes and props. The photographer knew just what poses to put us in, to get the right effect. And the photographer took several shots of each pose. We ended up with between two and three dozen to choose from. We ended up with one of us together, and then one of us each separately. I thought they turned out well. The downside was the $100 price tag. A little steep, but like I said if you are looking for bargains on the strip you are probably going to come up empty.


With that we determined that we had left enough money in Vegas. It was somewhere around 4 PM. Close enough. We retrieved our car and got back on Las Vegas Blvd. The rest of our trip was uneventful, other than a loud group of 20somethings eating at the same place we did in the airport. And that our flight was delayed for a few minutes.


Another fun trip! We packed it as full as we could. Our next trip is scheduled for this October. Margo and I are heading to New England to check out the fall foliage. I suspect the culture between rural Vermont and the Las Vegas Strip is liable to be a bit different.

Africancrab says:
You have a knack for detail don't you, lol! great blog, glad you had a crowning time to celebrate your anniversary.
Posted on: Apr 29, 2008
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