Immediately after work on Tuesday, June 30th, I drove to Fresno and spent the night with my sister Susan, visiting her, her husband Willie and my nephew Jake. Everyone is doing well. Even Susan is in school these days. She and Jake had to leave by 7:00am, so I was on the road by 8:00am the next morning.
Wednesday July 1st, I pulled into Las Vegas and checked into the Casino Royale. I touched bases with my friend Chuck, who is the GM there and we agreed to get together for breakfast the next morning. I called my nephew Carlos, who is in the air force. He had to study for a test Thursday afternoon, so we agreed to hookup after his test.
Thursday July 2nd, is the first day of Pooker Palooza. It opened at 11:00am, but I was there shortly before 10:00am, immediately after my breakfast with Chuck. I was one of the first people inside. I collected pictures of myself with famous poker players, t-shirts, decks of cards, beef jerky and other trinkets. Greg Raymer gave a very good seminar on tournament strategies.
That afternoon, Carlos called me to let me know that he was done with his test. I drove over and picked him up from the air base. We stopped at the half price tickets place and picked up two tickets to see Gordie Brown at the Golden Nugget. Gordie put on a great show and Carlos really enjoyed it. Afterwards we went to the Mermaid also located downtown on Fremont street. There Carlos had Island Tea, in a very big (plastic) glass that was about three feet tall. It even came with a neck strap. Carlos never did quite finish the drink and from time to time, we would step out of the Casino to enjoy the "Fremont Experience", which is a wonderful combination of images and music. The Queen tribute was especially good. Back inside the casino, we decided to try a deep fried Twinkie and Oreo. Amazingly while they sound disgusting, they are actually very good. I brought Carlos back to the base at around 11:oopm. He had to get up to catch his flight back early the next morning.
Friday July 3rd, is the 2nd day of Pooker Palooza and the first day of the World Series of Poker Main Event. This day started off with an incredible educational seminar by Annie Duke. I spent the day collecting more loot. That evening, I picked Lila up from the airport. We headed directly over to the Pooker Palooza, where Lila met legendary poker player Sussie Isaacs, where she got her picture taken and an autographed copy of her book. We headed over the Fremont street for dinner, a very large strawberry daiquiri with a neck strap and a deep fried Twinkie and Oreo.
Saturday July 4th, Lila and I headed over to the Pooker Palooza. We enjoyed an excellent lecture by Mark Sief. We got lots of pictures of Lila with famous poker players and Lila even got to see the legendary Doyle Brunson. We collected as much loot as possible before calling it a day.
We headed over to the Sarah, had a prime rib buffet dinner and finished it off with a Zombie mini shot, that costed a whole dollar and we still got to keep the glass. We returned to our hotel room to wash up and get changed for what would prove to be the highlight of the trip.
The Mirage has a Circus du Solei called "Love". Usually these shows are all about the amazing performances and the performances at this show were out standing, but what was really amazing was the music. It was the Beatles. George Martin had been hired to put together the music for the show and he had complete access to all of the original Beatles recordings. Dolby 5.1, is the latest technology in sound was used. Lastly, the theater seemed to be built specifically to allow the customer to enjoy the most amazing sound. This show was an amazing experience.
Sunday July 5th was supposed to be the day that Lila flew back home. Her flight was free and the only time available was at 7:00am. It was decided that I would cut my trip a bit short and she would ride back with me. That allowed us to sleep another 3 1/2 hours. Instead of driving straight back via Tehachipi, we drove to Studio City to have lunch at Jerry's Famous Deli with my brother Dave. The food was amazing. It really reminded me of NY deli food. From there we drove back home and pulled in at about 9:30pm.
It was an awesome trip.