Leaving Las Vegas… and not for the last time

I’m sure there is a good bit of Las Vegas. As I sit here at Newark Airport, half way home, I am racking my brains to think what it might be. The past couple of days I’ve had the delight to attend what turned out to be a rather enjoyable conference (really), and I’ve spoken with some great people and had a pretty good time. If only I could say that Las Vegas had anything to do with the more pleasurable parts of the trip, but I just can’t.

It took me a while to realise what was wrong, then one morning, when I was out for a half hour jog, it dawned on me. I ran past a bunch of twenty-somethings standing outside a casino, and one of them laughed, heartily and out loud. I suddenly thought what a rare phenomenon that was – there’s beaming smiles up on the hoardings, and lots of faux-bonhomie around the tables but genuine, friendly laughter is a rarity.

What is it about that place, that man-made rats nest of gaudy and overblown structures, that saps the soul? I genuinely don’t know. But there is something unnatural about the whole place. One only has to traverse the length of the canal system in the Venetian, a place where it’s never night and never day, to get an idea of this. When I first went, I decided that the canal system would give a pretty fair impression of what US hell would look like – a nothingness that somehow resembles familiar places and ideas, and which never, ever changes. I have since been told that the inside of the Excalibur would be the UK hell, but I haven’t yet had that pleasure.

Oh boy, I can’t wait to go back.

Leaving Las Vegas… and not for the last time

One thought on “Leaving Las Vegas… and not for the last time

  1. Try driving out east into the desert – then stop and look back at the smog hanging over Las Vegas. The city’s location is sustainability hell. Nothing in Vegas is real except the profits made by the casinos. It’s suspended reality (or disbelief for us cynics) and I think this must make people relax and spend money.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *