June 1, Las Vegas!
So much has changed since I last went to Las Vegas five years ago. New hotels like Mandalay Bay, Bellagio, Paris, and Venetian adorn The Strip. Even downtown has been reconstructed with The Freemont Experience. But personally, I’ve changed a lot, too.
My last trip to Vegas was my 21st birthday present from my parents. I was excited with the sound of the quarters clanging in the metal tray of the slot machines. I was amazed with the mound of snow crab I was served at the California Hotel. I was thrilled to shop at stores Hawaii didn’t have. I had fun, and it was a great initiation into legal gambling age.
Now, five years later, I still had a blast, but wasn’t so frivolous with my wallet. Just the weekend before Vegas, Kyle and I made a trip to the Big Island to scout out locations for our wedding next summer. Big numbers ran through our minds as we reviewed menus and calculated how much everything would cost.
Still, it’s not difficult to enjoy Las Vegas on a budget. First of all, tour packages with Vacations Hawaii includes airfare, hotel accommodations and meals for about $450. The bus to the Strip from downtown costs just $2 one way. Even a mid-size rental car is just $28 a day. Visiting the fabulous hotels doesn’t cost a cent, and provides great sightseeing for at least two days. Furthermore, there are many free attractions like the Bellagio water show, the Treasure Island pirate show, and the Freemont Street laser show.
We splurged a little to see Mystere, and that was well worth it. We also forked over $16 to ride to the top of the Paris’ Eiffel Tower, and $12 to see the view from the Stratosphere. We even paid $6 to see the 3-D movie at M&M World, which was pretty cute, by the way. Other than that, our money was for gambling and omiyage.
It’s easy to see why Hawaii people love Las Vegas. My grandparents go there three or four times a year, and that’s not uncommon. It’s not too far away, and very reasonable. And, there’s always something new to see.
If everything else fails, it’s a great place to run into old friends from home. That’s one thing that hasn’t changed!
Susan Sensei’s English Lesson #31（スーザン先生の英語講座 その31）
For two years I taught English in Japan, and was “スーザン先生” to my students in Ikaho town, Gunma Prefecture. I will try and introduce new words and phrases for the Japanese visitor to Hawaii. Here is this week’s situation:
Ｗhat would you like to drink?(飲み物は何にしますか？）
コーラをお願いします。= “Coke, please.”
簡単すぎる？ でも飛行機の中でこの質問に困っている人を時々見かけます。旅の最初の簡単な英会話、スムーズに話して自信をつけましょう。Have a nice trip!
Born in Hilo, I grew up going fishing with Dad, shopping with Mom, and trying to be a good “big sister” to a younger sister and brother. A Waiakea High School and the University of Hawaii at Manoa alumni, I taught English in Japan for two years on the JET Program, and am now employed at PacRim Marketing Group, Inc. I love doing a lot of things-shopping, reading, lettering, making jewelry & crafts, watching Friends-and that’s just the start of my list! I like being busy, and am active with the JET Alumni Association (JETAA) and the Honolulu Junior Japanese Chamber of Commerce (HJJCC.) My family and friends are, of course, very important to me, and are why I live a very typical, happy, local-style life in Hawaii and will never leave!