Las Vegas and Back

I was in Las Vegas last week for the first time since 2003. The infamous strip has changed since then, but was still, in so many ways, the Las Vegas I remembered. If there was one change that stood out, it was that the raunchiness and open debauchery was more prevalent than what I previously remembered. But it wouldn’t be Las Vegas, nor would it be as swarming, if that was not present. It’s part of the overall experience. I went there for a conference and did not have a lot of free time, but I did manage to get out and see a show and enjoy what time I had. The cost of living in Las Vegas is attractive, but the actual thought of living there is something that I have yet to get comfortable with, although I am told that it’s quite a family-friendly and convenient place to live once you leave the strip.

One of the things I will remember from this trip, ironically, was the flight back to New York. Not only did the staff of Virgin America take care of me onboard their flight, but while descending into JFK I was able to view the City in all of its nighttime glory. For the first time that I can remember I flew directly over Manhattan into JFK. My window seat several thousand feet in the air provided an extraordinary view. From locating the general area of my residence, to the dark rectangle of Central Park to the flashes of cameras on the 86th floor observation deck of the Empire State Building, the island and its surroundings were a sight to see, however brief it lasted. For the first time visitor to the City, such a view may have been deceiving, for what looks like one sparkling, manageable island can be daunting while down on street level. For me, though, it’s a welcome sight because it means I’m home.

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