We packed up in Springdale. With the car loaded we went over to the theater just next to our hotel. It claimed to have the largest IMAX screen in the country (or it was when it was built or some crap like that), and the hotel had given us free passes to some kind of film about Zion. We decided to view it. I’d expected it to be a documentary, but it turned out to be a weird sort of hour-long thing about some ancient native god trying to kill people. Great visuals, but kinda lame. Anyway.
On to Vegas! The plan was that we’d crash there overnight so we could be up bright and early for our morning flight, and still have time to get the car returned and all that. We had a cheap as hell reservation at the Luxor, but first we had to get there. That bit wasn’t a challenge until we were in Vegas itself. Because holy crap, the traffic. You’d think it’d be calming down on a Sunday as people start to make their way home.
Once you park at the Luxor you have about a half-mile walk through the casino inside to get to the check-in area, and it’s like a huge, grungy mall from the 80s with loads of neon lights and people still allowed to smoke indoors. There was also more traffic, though this time in the guise of a lengthy check-in line. Eventually we were assigned a room and got to take one of the diagonal elevators up to our room. A room that was crap and, in spite of being ‘non smoking’, reeked of ancient smoke. Honestly, I’ve stayed in low end motels that were classier than this. Zoe thought it was awesome, however. In the Cable Mountain Lodge she’d discovered roll pillows, which she decided to call Sausage Pillows. At the Luxor, we had four of them, so she busied herself using them as swords, building forts, etc. I guess points for that.
We did venture down to get dinner at the next-door interior mall of the Excalibur, an even older and grungier casino. The two hotels have underground connections that forms an even bigger mall. We grabbed some pizza from the Pizza Hut located exactly adjacent to the chapel. Classy.
By the way, there was a bit of surreality involved here beyond even the “wtf Vegas” situation, in that the whole time we’d been there we’d seen folks talking in sign language, and every now and then in the midst of the casino noise it would be rather quiet and we’d find ourselves in the middle of a group of them. On the ride back up the elevator we had another such group, signing frantically but punctuated with laughter. Turns out there was a convention for something called DeafNation there. Which was cool, definitely disrupted the Vegas expectations a bit.
The next morning we were up at the asscrack of dawn to get the car returned. The guy doing the check-ins was incredibly flustered due to the volume of cars coming in at the time, but still got us out of there pretty quickly. Then there was a ride on the shuttle back to the airport itself, at which we got into a priority screening lane to get through the vast security lines about an hour ahead of schedule. As a result we had a lengthier wait for the flight than anticipated. But at least it was nice and calm.
And with an uneventful flight, and an uneventful return to my car in the Atlanta lots (oh god I love my car so much. Nothing makes you love your car like driving a shitty rental for a week), we did finally roll home.