Thursday, December 11, 2008

Las Vegas

We left Sea-Tac late afternoon yesterday and arrived in the evening, all in all it was a smooth journey, we used a park and ride very close to the airport that was cheaper than one we've previously used and it seemed very fast, check-in was speedy too. We'd purposefully left enough time to get something to eat before we got on the plane, which ended up being Burger King, so I got to sample burger without the bun!

On the plane the air hostesses were really sweet, particularly with Banana Girl who was in the aisle seat, they'd even learnt her name and drink preferences by the end of the flight - when Sausage Boy asked to visit the pilot, who must have been in a very good mood as he let them both sit in the co-pilots seat and answered loads of questions.

Thw worst bit was arriving at the hotel, we stood at the front of the check-in queue with no one attending to us and a rapidly growing queue behind us, they eventually checked in and assigned us a room, I didn't realise until we got there that it was in a completely different part of the hotel to where we booked, so it was a long trek. However it has what we call "airport view", much to the delight of the children who have unbelievable tolerance for standing at the window counting planes taking off!

At the entrances to the hotels I've noticed signs saying under 21s are not allowed in the gambling areas, this rule must either have some very strange definition of this, or not be inforced at all as it would actually have been impossible to even get from the plane to the baggage collection without passing very close to the machines, let alone move around the hotel.

We popped down to the competion check-in/ticket desk and found out that kids were half price, though they then took pity on us and decided that such little kids really shouldn't have to pay and wondered off to find someone with the authority to ok that, which they did! Which means they all get to come Saturday evening, we also found my Saturday evening admission was included, which is a useful saving of $40, I still have to pay $20 for each daytime though. Turned out programs were $25, steep, but they kindly let me look through it to see how many were entered in each of our heats, then I decided to buy one anyway! We are the only couple entered in most of our events, this is a competition mostly aimed at amateurs who dance with a professional, so we will dance at the same time as male amateurs with their teachers (usually) who are at the same level, which for one dance includes the wife of our standard teacher. For a couple of dances there are some other amateur couples, but in older age categories. Apparently this doesn't give us first place automatically, they can still mark us 2nd if we, say, are very out of time with the music, I don't take much pleasure in places that mean nothing, but it may well be a positive thing in taking the pressure off.

For the Latin events we are doing, at open level, there are 9 couples in one and 12 in the other, being Silver when Open is above Gold, nothing is expected of us. It seems like you can't win either way, we were encouraged to enter these because of the likely lack of competition, but now we have the pressure of wanting to fit in, honestly, I think if we present ourselves and feel confident we will be fine. I'm renting a costume for this as costume rules are strict in syllabus events and for this I get to put everything on display! At a minimum we will dance 5 dances in a row, if we qualify for the finals they are straight afterwards, so it could be 10 in a row!

Andrew decided to take the kids to the library whilst I chilled out a bit, my hip was pretty achy after 5 or so hours wondering around. I just called them and the kids sounded really happy, but they are going to be pretty late back, I hope this means they might fall asleep more easily, but it's past nine and we still have to get dinner!

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