Lots to be done as we settled on on our third day here, but the day that had been scheduled to be the first. Max had to go to the airport, and that was the perfect opportunity for me to pick up our rental car, also at the airport.
Melissa was driving. Note to NASCAR: Any teams needing a new driver, Melissa is your girl. I have flown in an F/A-18, but it didn’t have the maneuverability of Melissa’s Toyota Sequoia.
With bumper-to-bumper traffic on Las Vegas Blvd I’ll swear she hit 80 mph… and that was just changing lanes!
With lots of people to shuttle around, we needed to rent a car with room. Helaine (Queen of Deals) had found a Chrysler Minivan from Dollar for about $130 per week. Taxes and fees added an extra $60!
I have a Dollar FASTLANE card. It cost nothing. The program is now named Dollar Express, but the effect is the same.
We walked into the rental office and saw a long line. Next to it was a space for Dollar Express members. I walked up and was taken next! Without the little, free, card, we’d still be in line.
We saved at least an hour – maybe more.
This car is not stylish. In fact, it sort of represents everything this trip is not supposed to be. It will do, because it is what we need.
On the way back from getting the car we stopped to get water and soda to keep in our room. It was interesting to see both the drug store and grocery had small video poker rooms.
I wasn’t done with poker, and when we got back, I sat back down. My luck from the morning hadn’t changed.
Actually, that’s wrong. My play hadn’t changed. I was playing sloppy, like a tourist who wanted hands to play and was willing to play lesser cards. That was a $180 lesson.
I was still up, but now my winnings were marginal… and I was upset, because I knew I could play better.
We all had dinner at a fancy Italian restaurant at the Venetian – Zeffirino. I had a pasta/seafood dish, which was very tasty.
As dinner ended, the waiter, captain and the restaurant’s strolling mandolin (Was it a mandolin… I’m really not sure. It wasn’t a guitar) player came by with a piece of cake and candle to celebrate my dad’s 80th.
The birthday isn’t until later in the week, but that’s what the trip is all about.
Michael and Melissa and my folks stayed at the Venetian. Helaine and I returned to the Mirage. I needed to redeem myself.
Let me stop for a second and explain something. Even when you know how to play poker correctly, it is always possible to be swayed by the siren song mediocre cards. That’s especially true of someone like me who will be here a relatively short amount of time and wants to play, not fold. I have to fight the temptation.
As it turns out, I did stick to my guns and played very nicely… until 2:30 AM PDT. Bottom line was a $40 win.
It would have been more (it would have been a few hundred more), but, with Aces full, I was beaten by an unlikely four of a kind by a player who went in, in the face of betting action, with nothing but a 2-4 and caught just the right cards.
I’m sure I also had a few unlikely wins, but it’s always the ‘beats’ you remember.
My sister and brother-in-law are on a plane now, heading into Vegas. I’m the designated driver, so I’d better get going. More later from Fabulous Las Vegas.
Wish you were here.