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LAS VEGAS AND ON TO PHOENIX

No Gambling for Me

sunny 78 °F

Good morning!

If one is not a gambler then Las Vegas only offers, in my opinion, dining and glamorous shows to see. Having been in 'Vegas a couple of times in the past I have done the 'show thing'. Ticket prices are high and most of the 'headliners' I don't recognize, a sign of my advancing years! Old Las Vegas or Fremont Street is a place I never visited so there I went. It is a crazy place with countless bars, casinos, and restaurants lining the street in about a 4 block area. Overhead, under the roof (about 4 stories above the street) people Zipline at high speeds. On the street, performers, and exhibitionists do their thing with tip cups at their feet. Musicians of all types, guitarists, drummers, saxaphonists, accordian players, mimes, scantily clad women and men dressed in 'not much' all add to the atmosphere. People watching is fun. Observing the reaction of the crowd to all these antics is a 'hoot'.

Being at the Elks gave me an opportunity to wash the MH, clean the windows, and to attend to a couple of minor maintenance items. Laundry is a necessity once a week, and a haircut every 2-3 weeks so I took care of those. With all that accomplished, I left Vegas with money in my pocket not in the slot machines. The 5 hr. trip south to Phoenix was a good one. Enroute I crossed the new (relatively) bridge at Hoover Dam named the Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge. Pat Tillman was the NFL player who enlisted in the Army after 9/11 to fight terrorism. Sadly, he was killed in action overseas but has been honored and recognized as a national hero and patriot. The arched bridge, an engineering marvel, spans Lake Mead high above Hoover Dam and offers spectacular sites of the canyon below. Prior to the bridge being built traffic crossed over the dam itself. After 9/11 the potential vulnerability of the dam was of concern, thus the by-pass bridge was built over the gap to eliminate that risk. The most direct route from Vegas to Phoenix is on US 93, a 4 lane road (mostly) of older vintage. Parts of it have been upgraded and called the I-10 Corridor. I-10, a new interstate highway is in the works for this region.

Crossing over into Arizona I noticed a subtle change in landscape. Nevada and Arizona are barren lands. The subtle change is in the color of the rocks from brown in Nevada to a red hue in Arizona. The stereo-typical Saguaro cacti one sees in pictures of AZ emerge in the desert scene. The few towns that I passed through are remote and one wonders how people sustain themselves with employment. Phoenix, on the other hand, is busy with a pop. of 1.5 million people. The State Capitol is located here, and it is a 'snow-bird' destination for western retirees due to its warm climate. Most leave for the north in the springtime for the temps. reach triple digits for weeks at a time in the summer months. My timing for a visit is good for the temps. have fallen to the 80's during the days. Tonight I have been invited to my friends, Bill & Jenny Aaron's home for dinner. They live in a Phoenix suburb called Surprise. It is near Sun City, and Sun City West, two well-known retirement suburbs. Tomorrow I shall drive into Phoenix to visit the Capitol and State Museum and to see whatelse Phoenix has to offer.

Posted by dixter 08:13 Archived in USA Tagged & phoenix surprise

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