When we arrived in San Fran we went into town to show the girls around Pier 39 and the Fish Markets. I came home a little bit confused - Dave kept stopping at each camera shop.
After Yosemite we headed on down to Death Valley National Park. Death Valley was a wonderful surprise - the mountains and differing landscapes where really spectacular. We did get the girls up prior to sunrise to walk out onto the Bad Salt Lake to see the sunrise - but unfortunately there was too much cloud cover. After this we went for a small hike up to the Natural Bridge (I'm sure every park has one of these), we then drove down to the Devil's Golf Course, around the Artists Palette and then headed over to the Cathedral. It was about a 5 km round trip hike - this was way too much for the girls, they stayed in
the car while the Big Fella and I made the trek - which at some stages we wished we had taken the same option as the girls. Though at the end of the trip we were both very happy that we had made the hike. The girls are a bit puffed after their early morning and have had enough - so we decided to go back to the park and pack up and head on down to Vegas. Dave and I will be back to Death Valley to explore more at a later date.
The first night we arrived and everybody was sitting around not planning on going out - hey I'm in Vegas (yes I know again), so I put on some fresh clothes and off I went - over to Circus Circus for a few hours. I have learnt that the servers expect a $1 a tip for each drink and if you give them a bit more and ask them to just keep them coming (thanks for the tip- handbag) that's exactly what they do - so a few drinks later I ventured on back to Stubbie.
The next day is Kecca's birthday so the girls have gone to do a bit of shopping and get a bit of waxing done. We make the trip down to New York, New York for dinner - prior to going in the girls and I just had to have a cocktail in one of their yard glasses. After dinner and drinks we headed on over to the Big Fella's favourite Poker Machine (yes I know it is hard to believe but since our last visit to Vegas he really has enjoyed playing the Fireball Machine - don't know if that is a good thing or not). Unfortunately, tonight we weren't so lucky on the Fireball - so we decided to go for a walk to have a look at some other Casinos. Kecca had purchased a beautiful new pair of grey boots (high heeled) which looked absolutely fantastic on her but unfortunately she couldn't walk in them for too long so we decided to call it a night and head on back home.
We have decided to leave Stubbie at Circus Circus RV Park in storage whilst we visit New York, so the day before we are to leave we are getting her ready i.e. winterising her so nothing freezes over whilst we are gone. We have organised to spend the 21st Dec in the Flamingo Casino as we have an early flight the next day. Well, let me just say that things did not go according to plan. We had packed up and decided that we would fill Stubbie up with Propane then give her a wash before putting her into Storage and meeting the girls at the Flamingo - we had originally planned to be at the Flamingo around 3:00pm. We did eventually make it to the Flamingo around 6:00pm. Whilst we were filling up with propane - we noticed that Stubbie had a flat tyre - of course it had to be one in the front. So I decided to do some washing whilst Dave worked on the tyres. After Dave got the tyre pumped up we then needed to find an auto shop to get some parts. We eventually caught up with girls who asked us if we would like to go to Holly's show, but after the day that Dave and I had we decided that we would have dinner a quiet drink then go to bed. Once again our plans changed. As we hadn't eaten for sometime and we were very thirsty the first few drinks went down very fast and from then on there was no return. We just continued to drink and have a good time - I had a win on the Pokies which meant we had some money to play with, so we decided to wait until the girls had come back from the show and have a nice quiet drink with them. Wrong again - by the time the girls arrived we had had way too many drinks and we were both playing the tables with some young lads from Texas - I'm sure to this day they don't know what hit them. I'll just say that the Big Fella and I believe we both finally made it to the room around 2:00am.
22/12/2010 - Las Vegas to New York - We wake up the next morning at around 5:00am not feeling too bad - I think we still had some alcohol left in our system - but we were very slow to get going. We arrive at the Las Vegas airport only to stand in the line for about 30 minutes then to find out that we have missed our flights. The air line staff put us on standby for the available flights. If we can get on both of our stand by flights we will arrive in New York around 9:00pm - 4 hours later than planned. Our first flight from Las Vegas to Atlanta, Georgia felt longer than our flight from Brisbane to Los Angeles - we had broken one of our cardinal rules - never fly with a hangover or drunk. Whilst we waited for 4 hours for our connecting flight from Atlanta to New York, I was going through my folder with all our travel information in it and our tickets to Madame Tussuad's for New Years Eve to try and provide the girls with the address etc for our New York apartment, well still not having a clear head I left the folder at the Atlanta airport.
We eventually arrived at New York Airport and this was when I realised I'd left my folder at Atlanta airport. The four tickets for New Years Eve was my main concern - I needed to wait until the morning before I could try and contact lost and found to see if it had been found - It was a long few days before I received a call to say that the folder had been found and was being shipped overnight to New York - if it hadn't been found I was up for 4 more tickets to Madame Tussuad's at around $130 each - I'm sure this is something that the Big Fella would never let me forget.
So after a long long day we finally arrived at the address we would be staying at for the next 11 nights - only to realise that we are on the 4th floor and there are no lifts - great. That wasn't the worst of it - we knock on the door and the girls let us in. Let me just say that the apartment doesn't quiet look like the photos. The floor has a huge bend in it - the cupboard doors don't slide, one has been broken off, the sofa bed would be like sleeping on just the spring no mattress and the list goes on - two good aspects was that it was clean and in a fantastic location - within walking distance to most attractions. We are lucky enough that the apartment sleeps 5, so Karleigh will be sleeping on the Sofa Chair in the bedroom, Dave and I in the DOUBLE Bed (not much room after us two get in there) and Kecca will be sleeping on the lounge. When we had unpacked we started chatting to the girls and found out that not only had Karls hugged the Porcelain bus in the morning but that Kecca needed to use the sick bag on the plane.
27/12/2010 - We woke up this morning (after the blizzard) to find that everything was white. The Blizzard had dumped about 50cm of snow on the city. The whole city seemed to come to a stand still there were cars just left in the Streets now covered under snow. The girls where excited to get downstairs and make some snow angels.
31/12/2010 - Today Kecca, Dave and I are having an easy day going for a visit to Grand Central Station, trying not to do too much before our night out at Madame Tussuad's Wax Museum. Karleigh has gone to visit some more museums etc.
02/01/2011 - Back to Vegas.
03/01/2011 - Time is running out for the girls - so of course we head off to the shops for some last minute shopping. The Big Fella stays behind to keep Stubbie company. I think he is overwhelmed living with 3 females - all I can say is wait for Simone and Heather to get here.
04/01/2011 - Today is the girls last full day together in Vegas. So they get up earlish and go exploring some of the Casinos. Tonight we have tickets for Mystere (Cirque de Soleil). Prior to going to the show we all went out to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory at Caeser's Palace, then the girls and I head on over to Treasure Island to see the show - which as usual with the Cirque de Soleil was just fantastic - this was Kecca's first. Dave wasn't feeling too well so decided to give the show a miss. After the show we walked back past Circus Circus at which stage Kecca left Karls and I to go onto the Stratosphere where we went on the XScream ride. The ride is a like a teeter totter 900 feet above ground, which goes over the side of the building.
05/01/2011 - 06/01/2011 - It was a sad couple of days as we first had to say goodbye to Karls and then the next day say goodbye to Kecca. Kecca's last day didn't go as planned. We had actually planned to take Kecca to the Older area of Las Vegas - after dropping Stubbie in to get the shower pan replaced.
We have retrieved our snowboard bags off the baggage carousel and we are still waiting for one more bag - when the carousel stops and there are no bags left on it, we realise that this bag has gone missing After filling in a report and getting through customs we catch the shuttle bus up to the resort. Of course the bag that is missing has mainly my clothes and underwear plus both our toiletries. I let Dave know that I will need to borrow some underpants- to which he replies not to stretch them - he is living on dangerous ground.
After checking into our room and unpacking we decided to go for a walk. As we where walking past the coffee shop we had a look in and spotted Carmel and crew. So after a coffee etc we decided to meet the Bonds, Waites and Pitkin's for happy hour at around 6:00pm. We have a great night just sitting around having drinks and nibbles and ilo of going out for dinner we decided to order Pizza. Of course after a small bottle of Rum the Bond and Geoff decided that they would go pick it up - in there shorts it's about -18 degrees outside - oh the effects of alcohol
12/01/2010 - We woke up this morning to snow, snow, snow - they had over 40cm overnight. The previous 3 nights they had received 3-5cm each night so with another 40cm drop it became very deep posder. So the Howard's and the Elford's take off - Much to Dave's and my delight we witnessed something that neither of us had ever seen, Brant and Bobbie both fell. Bobbie and I lasted about 3 runs before we decided that it was too much hard work for our knees and headed in to the coffee shop. It was a great day for the powder hounds.
We had an absolutely wonderful time - yet again at the Howard's Hacienda. We got to see the Vee's play 3 times. We went out to dinner at the Ross's friends of the Howard's for a lovely meal - they really do dinner parties extremely well over, and what a lovely group of people. During the dinner party I had picked up an allergy and both my eyes became really swollen and weepy (they felt like there was sand in both of them) - it really looked like Dave had wacked me one - if it was first thing in the morning he would of been blamed. So unfortunately the next morning I was still not quite right and decided to give the skiing a miss - Dave and Brant both went up to Apex whilst Bobbie and I stayed at home. We did get a day's skiing / boarding up at Apex - unfortunately the weather wasn't the best - it had started raining down the bottom of the hill. Lisa and Brant made it up for lunch and then some afternoon skiing. Even with Lisa being pregnant she skis just so beautifully - it is great to watch.
It was great to catch up with Peter and Lisa. Lisa is now only two months away from her due date and what really annoyed me was that from the back you couldn't even tell if she was pregnant.
We had a great opportunity to catch-up with Tony and Lisa (our landlords for the Canyon House) for a lovely lunch. It was really great to see them again - they are a wonderful couple. They really haven't changed a bit - we got to have a good old chin wag and to finally see some of there gorgeous wedding photos. Visiting the Canyon House bought back many fond memories.