We went back this year, and while it was much more dreary and cloudy, I still took a little time to take a few pictures in the evening before the sun went down. Here's what I got (excuse the number of pics, I was just playing around with camera settings!):
Last year a few girls from work, Marta, Dawn and I, headed to Marta's family cottage in Barrys Bay. I woke up one morning to a beautiful sunrise and spent an hour capturing these photos.
We went back this year, and while it was much more dreary and cloudy, I still took a little time to take a few pictures in the evening before the sun went down. Here's what I got (excuse the number of pics, I was just playing around with camera settings!):
Kit Lens Pics
50 mm Lens Pics
On the Europe trip there was a lot of travelling - 2 plane rides and 8 train trips plus waiting around them all. I read 10 books and a few more the week after when I recovered from my travels at the cottage. Anyone who knows me well knows I love to read. Unfortunately during the school year my "reading" is in the form of audiobooks, on my 40-minute journey to and from work each day. That still counts as reading, I guess, but usually on my drive I'm looking for a series of books that will last several months. During the summer or any school break I devour books. So anyway, the books I have read recently, in no particular order (the order that's on my Kobo):
The coolest bookstore ever, in Paris
1. The Rise & Fall of Great Powers - Tom Rachman
This book started off very confusing - 3 timelines about the life of a girl from childhood to her mid-thirties. She has a pretty crazy life and all the supporting characters are really interesting. I can see this book being studied in school one day. It's a bit depressing at times but it has a nice ending.
2. The Book of Unknown Americans - Cristina Henriquez
This was a book I couldn't put down. Basically it's about the different families living in an apartment complex who are all immigrants from Latin American countries. You really are hoping the characters get what they need the whole book. Some stories are happy and others are not, and they are all woven together. An interesting look at what it's like to move to a foreign country and try to fit in and get by. Definitely recommend this one.
3. The Emperor of Paris - CS Richardson
This was another book with multiple story lines woven together. I bought a few centered around Paris. This one was okay - some characters I liked more than others, but it has a nice ending and the scenes the book paints are great.
4. The One & Only - Emily Giffin
Emily Giffin is one of those authors that I use as a go-to for beachy summer reads. Of course you probably know her writing from "Something Borrowed" and "Something Blue" - books that I think we all read in university. This one was actually a bit more of a mature theme for her writing - a book about a woman and the love she has for her friend's father. A bit of a taboo topic and sometimes you'll be cringing a bit with the thought but the characters really get to you.
5. The Harem Midwife - Roberta Rich
This is a sequel to "The Midwife of Venice" - once again following the journey of a midwife helping families with the birth of babies. The first book had a bit more in the way of midwifery, but I liked this book too. Always a dire situation that seems like it won't end well but does. This time the ending is even happier!
6. If I Stay - Gayle Forman
I just saw a preview for this book as a movie. Had no clue when I read it, and now idea of how it will translate to film as it is quite a short book. It's about a girl who gets into a car accident with her whole family and only she survives - in a coma she has to decide whether she wants to live or die. It goes back to various points in her life to tell the story of her family and friends, and also them at the hospital visiting her. Very teenage love story - very sweet.
7. The Painted Girls - Cathy Marie Buchanan
This was another Parisian book about two sisters living in Paris around the turn of the century and trying to survive as ballet girls with little money. I loved reading this one because there were so many sites mentioned that we visited in Paris, and the story is well-told. Definitely recommend this one.
8. The Winter Witch - Paula Brackston
I love a little paranormal fiction every once in a while, but at least this one is more of the adult variety versus the teenager stuff that's all over the place (though I'm guilty of reading many of those too). This one is about a young woman who does not speak who gets married to a man and moves to his village in Wales. You soon learn that she has a few magical gifts but she's not the only one in her new home. It's a "good versus evil" story with a little magic and a generally sweet story.
9. Dark Places - Gillian Flynn
As with "Gone Girl", Dark Places is another book that I couldn't put down. Even darker that her first, this book will definitely keep you on the edge of your seat. About a girl who's family is supposedly murdered by her brother - flashes between her mom and brother on the day leading up to the murders, and her about 25 years later. Did her brother really do it? Read and find out - and seriously - you will not turn out the lights before you finish this book - it's very addictive.
10. Three Sisters - Susan Mallory
This is a nice beachy summer read where you wish that you lived in a quaint seaside town where you had all the money in the world to renovate a gorgeous house and just happen to have an even more gorgeous contractor helping you along the way. Very easy read and perfect for summer.
11. Bossypants - Tina Fey
I have wanted to read this for a while. At first I was going to get it on audiobook because I hear Tina Fey's voice throughout the book anyway, but I wanted it for when I went away and it was honestly less expensive this way. Her book is hilarious. I read this on the train from London to York and I was giggling the whole time - people were giving me looks. Highly recommended!
12. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? - Mindy Kaling
Mindy Kaling is funny in a different way from Tina Fey. I have a hard time separating her from Kelly Kapour or Mindy from her show, and her book is sort of funny in a silly, random way. A fun read - just like talking to a girlfriend.
13. The Paris Wife - Paula McLain
Another that took me a while to get around to, but I really liked it. My husband is a bit obsessed with Hemingway and other authors of that time (not surprising this occurred after seeing "Midnight in Paris"), and so reading this book showed me a bit about Hemingway's life (did you know he lived in Toronto for a while?) and his first wife, Hadley. If you know anything about him you know that they don't end up together in the end - writers are difficult - but it's still an interesting story.
14. 12 Years a Slave - Solomon Northup
I refused to watch the movie until I read the book, and now that I have I'm not sure I need to see the movie. The book was really good. An honest account of Solomon's life after being kidnapped and sold into slavery, though he is actually a free man. I know most have probably seen the movie, but the book is worth reading.
15. Crazy Rich Asians - Kevin Kwan
This book is hilarious and just great. An interesting look at how the lives of the rich and famous Asians are and how an american may not exactly fit in well to that world. Definitely recommend.
Book Recommendations from Audiobooks
- Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon - Davina Porter is an incredible narrator and these books are amazing. What makes an amazing narrator? Someone who changes their voice depending on the characters and you don't need to listen to "Jamie said" to know who is speaking. Davina Porter does this. She can sound like Claire one second with her English accent and then flip to Jamie's highland Scot's accent and you just get lost in his dreaminess. I read the first few when I was younger but wanted to re-read and so glad I did. I just finished "Written in My Own Heart's Blood" and loved it. Can't wait for the series on Starz to air this Sunday!
- Harry Potter series by JK Rowling - Jim Dale once again is an amazing narrator. Obviously we've seen the movies but I read this series after only the third movie had come out and have read it again at least twice since.
- Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris - I read a few books once again before True Blood came out. The first few books are better than the later ones, but they are a fun supernatural read about Sookie and all her vampire, ware, shifters, witches, fairies, etc.
- Anything by Phillipa Gregory - whether it be the Cousin's war or the Tudor line - her books are just great. I was in love with the sites and palaces in and around London because of her.
Other Series I'm Less Proud to have Read on Audiobook
- 50 Shades series by EL James - definitely make sure your windows are rolled up when you are reading this and stopped at a red light.
- House of Night series by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast - silly highschool vampire school books.
- Beautiful Creatures series by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl - more supernatural silliness.
- City of Bones series by Cassandra Clare - I'm still going to read the one that just came out, though.
- Divergent series by Veronica Roth - the first movie was actually pretty good too!
- Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins - I actually liked these books, and I get all excited about the movies.
- Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer - this was the second series I read after Harry Potter - great for the trip to and from school way back in 2008. Now they seem silly looking back on it.
The south of France is absolutely beautiful, especially on the east coast. We took the train to Nice and cabbed it to Villefranche. My brother recommended a cab because of the hills, but you can take a train there for 6 euros (total) and it's a 5 minute walk to the hotel instead of the 50 euro cab ride. We took the train at the end when we went back to Nice (recommendation fail, Adam). What he did recommend well was staying in Villefranche instead of Nice. We actually spend no time in Nice at all - looked like a nice city, but we wanted to be away a bit from that and Villefranche was perfect. We were right at a harbour and close to Eze and Monaco by train or bus. You could also easily take the train to Cannes if you wanted.
View from our balcony of all the pretty boats
Sunset on the harbour. When we got there (around 4) we went right to the public beach just around the bay. It was nice to just sit in the sun and swim in the warm water for an hour or so before we headed back. Just what I needed.
Day 11 iPhone - hotel room at the Welcome Hotel in Villefranche (my brother and Jess stayed here on their honeymoon in 2012 and recommended it to us - it was great - right on the water and central to all the restaurants), the view from our balcony, dinner at L'Aparte on the street right behind our hotel - delicious, a little friend who stayed by me in hopes I would drop food (I named him Bouton), and me waiting for Matt to finish taking pictures.
On the walk to Beaulieu sur Mer to catch a bus to Eze - pretty flowers
Church in Beaulieu
This is St. Jean/Cap Ferat - a very exclusive place for yachts and to vacation in the south of France
Beaulieu would also be a nice quiet escape in lieu of Villefranche but there are less restaurants, though there are more Michelin-starred quite expensive ones in St. Jean.
We took the bus (#100) to Eze village (which is different than Eze sur Mer - by the sea) - this is up on a hill and the church is about half-way up to the very top.
At the top at Les Jardins Exotique - cacti!
Yeah okay let's everyone "summer" here next year!
Matt took all these garden ones - I hate that he's so much better than me without trying, haha.
I think Matt liked the colours in this picture?
On the way back to Villefranche
Day 12 iPhone - Beautiful streets in Eze, view from one side of Eze, our street at sunset.
I sort of had a meltdown on the way home from Eze - it took over an hour for our bus, the connecting bus drove right by us so we had to walk 45 mins home, all while I really had to pee but none of the pay bathrooms were working and I was just exhausted. We ordered room service and relaxed this night, haha, I did not want to leave.
Last day we went to Monaco - this place was just incredible...I wonder who lives here?
Walking through the gardens to the Monte Carlo casino
Hotel beside the casino - looks fancy!
Here it is - I thought there would be more of a grand staircase out front.
Lots of business and hotels in this city
More hotel views
Walked down to the harbour
Yachts - so many boats!
This is more my type of boat - a luxury sail versus a floating hotel.
Genetic research pays!
All the Monte Carlo hotels on the water
Sainte Devote chapel in the middle of all the high-rises of Monte Carlo
Back up to the casino lawn - view the sky!
Hermitage Hotel Monte Carlo - seen this in a lot of movies.
Day 13 iPhone - views of the sea from Matt's last run (he ran once in each place we visited - 6 times over 2 weeks is pretty good - I brought no workout clothes or shoes), me reading on the balcony in the morning (thank goodness for my Kobo because I read 9 books while away), 2 cruise ships in the harbour, yachts in Monte Carlo, the Monte Carlo Casino (Casino Royale!), a geeky concave/convex mirror shot for my science students, our hotel - Hotel welcome, drinks and nibbles on the patio, a few "last night in Villefranche" shots, gelato love, and random fireworks just outside our balcony to end off a great few days in the south of France.
Our fifth stop was the little town of Aix en Provence. It was definitely my least favourite stop, but I think it's because I expected it to be different. It's definitely a pretty town, lots of restaurants and shops, but I wanted to experience more of the Provence countryside, which is about an hour outside the city. I wanted to see the lavender fields and the country homes and fields of prettiness...which is not what a central city is about! I was also upset because they have an amazing flower market on Saturday but it ends at 1 p.m. and we got there right at one so we missed it. But we made the best of it and wandered around the streets and shops. We only spent one night here before heading East.
Am I too old to go on this?
The only flowers I saw this day...at a flower shop.
Window flowers are so pretty!
Only shot I could get of this church without interrupting the wedding pictures going on below
Day 10 iPhone - view of Marseille (train stop on the way to provence), our hotel room (stayed at the Adagio Aix en Provence Centre), pretty turquoise shutters, Cezanne painted many sites in Provence, pretty purple church doors, the main street at night)
So the next day while Matt was running I got up early and went to the Pavillion de Vendomme, which is a house and gardens, and took lots of pictures of their flowers. The least I could do after missing the flower market!
Now for too many florals...
Morning of Day 11 iPhone - Matt's morning run in city square, construction cover still looks like a church!
Our forth stop brought up across a body of water to France, and specifically, Paris. We spent 3 nights here before travelling south, but we also spent one more night here at the very end, before we went to London and flew home. It was a day of travelling to get here - East Coast rail from Edinburgh to London, and the Eurostar from London to Paris.
I got to use a lot of French - I was in immersion for about 5 years and took courses in high school and university too. I have enough conversational french to check in and out of hotels, order in restaurants, ask for directions, and make polite small talk. Nothing complicated, but enough.
I LOVED this city. A lot of people I know didn't love it, but I really did. Beautiful architecture, variety of culture, such good food. Yes, it is a bit dirty. It's pretty dirty actually. Compared to the UK anyway, that never seems to have garbage anywhere. But it's the city of love, and I definitely fell in love with Paris.
First day we got there late - so here are so iPhone pics from Day 7
Our hotel room - Residence Des Arts between the 5th and 6th arrondissement), Notre Dame, Eiffel Tower from afar
One of the many Ponts across the Seine
Entering the square around the Louvre (forget the name)
Louvre! We didn't go with with only 2.5 days there, but definitely a must-see on our next trip (that and Versailles).
Love the architecture - we really need more Ghostbuster-like gargoyles and angels in Toronto
Yes I would live here.
Pretty gardens on the walk to Les Champs Elysees
I made fun of this floral J.Crew shirt a lot - but I guess Paris the place to wear it, haha.
Figures Matt would stop traffic for the perfect shot.
Arch de Triomphe
Pretty places on the walk to the Eiffel Tower
Double camera work.
Seriously I love the buildings!
Day 8 iPhone - typical french breakfast perfection, selfies by the Louvre and Tower,
flats on les Champs Elysees, Arch de Triomphe, pretty lunch bakery & cafe,
Eiffel tour shots
Moulin Rouge - in a much scuzzier place than I imagined...I wish it still looked like it did in the movie, haha.
(Forgot my camera in the morning so this is later on in the day)
Sacre Coeur in Montmartre
I love that this shot looks like I left only the door red and made everything else grayscale.
View of Paris from Montmartre
A pair of great street musicians
I made Matt do a glamour shot. PS - love the blue socks babe.
Sacre Coeur at sunset
Day 9 iPhone - there's a lot since I forgot my camera in the morning
Matt's morning run, early morning of laundry and pretty drinks, Notre Dame (we lit a candle for all of our loved ones and those of friends and family), Notre Dame organ, love lock bridge, gorgeous square across the Seine, "space invader" street art, delicious salads (finally, vegetables!), a little chocolaterie gouter, Montmartre view, delicious dinner in Montmartre, Matt waiting for the "Midnight in Paris" coach (in the exact spot from the movie), random bike party in the middle of the night complete with music.
iPhone pictures from our extra night in Paris the day before we left Europe
Teeny hotel room for one night, last Notre Dame shot at sunset, gallery near the Sorbonne,
Pretty architecture in the 10th, Shakespeare and Company bookstore (the coolest book store, seriously), eating a crepe in the 5th (finally), amazing dinner near the Sorbonne, final Paris morning breakfast and hot chocolate.
Our third stop on the trip was Edinburgh, Scotland. We again took the East Coast Rail from York. We spent two days and two nights here, and I loved it. I thought it was a beautiful place, lots of sights, very clean, and lots of interesting history. Definitely my favourite place in the UK (Matt says I would have liked London more if it was not 35+ degrees every day and it was not so unbearable to be outside in the humidity, haha).
The Royal Mile
If you want to see churches, go to the UK and France!
Matt in front of Edinburgh Castle
Can't remember which King this is...
Walk up from the Grassmarket area (with a nice park that is supposedly where lots of bodies are buried...the grass is so green there...makes sense!)
Edinburgh understands my love of colourful buildings
Holyrood Castle - Charles and Camilla where there this day, but like Kate in Kensington, they did not answer...
Day 5 iPhone - our hotel (used the Ibis chain - Center South Bridge - very modern), lunch at Angels with Bagpipes, scary church at night, pretty terraced cafe, more graves at night, City of the Dead "double dead" ghost tour (very creepy).
Edinburgh castle (going in this time)
View of the city from the castle walls
I love the castle village
Oldest structure in Edinburgh - St. Margaret's Chapel
Why did the Queen get the key to the city so many times? Do they change the locks a lot?
Interesting display of weaponry in The Great Hall
I like the Scottish guards' uniforms better than the London ones...sorry London. Also they get weapons.
Matt taking in the view...plus a canon...
Okay, seriously, this castle is awesome.
Perfect place to take a break from the heat
Damn me wearing a white skirt...
Toronto needs more monuments in the middle of the city
Not just in Greece!
Took this right before the grass was cut
Hello again, Holyrood! Hill to Arthur's seat in the background too (Matt ran it the next morning).
Scotch Whisky Experience tour and tasting
Day 6 iPhone - Edinburgh Castle, McPherson hunting tartan, dinner at Castle Terrace (Michelin starred and so good), Scotch Whisky tasting, run up to Arthur's seat
Our second stop on the trip was a day in York. We took the East Coast Rail from King's Cross to York station which is a few hours north of London. We wanted to break up the long trip to Edinburgh and have heard York is a nice place to visit. It definitely was. You only need a day there, really, but it's worth a stop if you have the time.
Our lodgings - the Grange Manor House - festive as the Tour de France just went through the town.
York Minster Cathedral
View of houses from the wall surrounding the city
The Shambles - a very cool old street with shops and restaurants.
York iPhone: Lunch decor in York, proper English tea with scones and clotted cream, our manor house lodgings,
streets of York, true Yorkshire lunch including Yorkshire Pudding (this was Matt's), York selfie,
candles in the window of our York dinner, the wall around the city, Matt's morning run,
pretty river shot, pretty garden shot, and who defiles a walk named after Dame Judi Dench? HONESTLY.
Our first stop on our two week journey in the UK and France was to London. We flew in and arrived in the city in the early afternoon. After a brief nap, we were ready to explore!
Walking up from our little lower flat in West Kensington - used the "Castletown House" Apartments
Hello? Princess Kate? I'm here for tea! No one is answering my calls at the gate! HELLO????
Prettiest pub exterior in all of London. Churchill Arms in Kensington on the way to Notting Hill.
Day 1 iPhone - our flat, pub selfie, Notting Hill street,
Matt in Kensington park, dinner in Bayswater at "Hereford Road", more pretty Winston Churchill Pub
Day # 2 - The Tower of London! And the beginning of no hot hair styling tools...and humidity...
The Bloody Tower - oooooh I just got chills thinking of all that went on here...
Crown Jewels are kept here - they were very shiny and sparkly! I really need more tiaras and scepters...
Tower Green - poor Anne Boelyn and silly Catherine Howard...
(I read a lot of Phillipa Gregory and other English historical fiction authors)
The White Tower (slightly less bloody)
Another random tower...would have stayed here all day if we didn't only have a few days here!
Tower Bridge - I actually had no clue Matt was doing this while I took the picture until after. What a geek.
The Globe Theatre. Ohhhh how I love Shakespeare in Love - if only I could have seen the Rose too!
Hope says "ohhh isn't the Thames beautiful?"
Ummmm...well the architecture on each side is great, but are we looking at the same muddy body of water here?
St. Paul's Cathedral. Matt says he looks superimposed in this picture, haha.
Heading into the theatre district of London to pick up our tickets for Once.
This blue rooster in Trafalgar Square was so out of place with all the other structures - therefore I loved it.
National Gallery - spent a lovely couple of hours in the A/C here.
Jeff's recommendation of the best view of London in the city - he was RIGHT!
(standing at the base of Trafalgar square on top of a platform)
Whitehall - how I longed to see it before it became government offices.
This was one of the prettiest palaces way back when...
Horse Guard along the Whitehall road
Westminster Abby - we were 15 minutes too late to go in this day!
Seriously a beautiful place.
Day 2 iPhone - Dinner at the amazing Cork & Bottle in Leicester Square, Once the Musical Set (definitely see this for a different type of broadway show), The Pudding Bar (best dessert EVER - S'more cheesecake which is really peanut butter in the UK it seems).
Day # 3 - started off with brunch in Belgravia - very posh place!
Seemed we just arrived for the 11 a.m. playing of the Royal Guard Band. BUSY!
Royal-ish wedding? No clue but I liked the morning coats and horse-drawn carriage.
Seriously a lot of tourists.
Marching Band. I wish we had seen when they played the Game of Thrones intro song!
Watch that HERE.
Wandering through St. James and Green park. Hello SWAN.
Yes I will live here please! Great view of Buckingham, lots of flowers, random swans...
Canadian flag has prime location!
This time we actually got to go in Westminster - oh I wish I could have taken pictures inside. Seriously a great place - did an audio tour here. Definitely recommended so you can really understand all you're seeing.
Day 3 iPhone - Matt's morning run in Kensington Park, brunch in Belgravia, Buckingham,
Tower of London at night and bridge, random cute statue,
dinner at Dalston Yard Street Feast (foodie heaven - great food trucks in an abandoned old warehouse), random monument amidst construction, Street Feast selfi
In mid-November Marta, Dawn and I (all colleagues) headed up to Marta's parents' cottage in Barry's Bay. The first morning I woke up and saw a beautiful sunrise and colours outside. Despite being -5 outside, I could not help going out all bundled in my PJ's and taking some pictures while a dog across the Bay barked its head off at me. Most of these pictures are completely unedited - some are lightened just a bit because they came out too dark. It was just that great light that showed up in the photos! Sorry for the sheer volume of pictures - I couldn't just pick a few. They speak for themselves.
This last one was taken later in the afternoon. Dawn just looks so far away and haunted, but it was still so pretty. Thanks so much to Marta's parents for letting us use the cottage - we had a great time eating, drinking, and watching SATC, along with a lot of relaxing!
Matt had to go to Round Mountain, Nevada, for a last minute business meeting, and his work was nice enough to put me up for a few days while he was down there. His meeting was on Wednesday, so we left Tuesday morning, arrived in Vegas Tuesday morning (gotta love time differences), he headed up to Round Mountain (about 4 hours away), and went to his meeting the next day. I stayed in Vegas, and he got back here Wednesday night in time for our third anniversary. We stayed Thursday and Friday and went home Friday night, arriving home Saturday morning (gotta hate time differences). I paid for only my flights and meals, and lounged around while he was gone (probably would have done that back in Toronto anyway). I didn't bring my DSLR, so these are all iPhone photos.
Weather check prior to the trip - looks good! No humidity, hot and sunny.
View at the top of the strip of our hotel - Mandalay Bay
Oh yes, that flash of blue above was our rental car - the bright blue Mustang. Very flashy, but just honestly what they had in terms of a mid-sized car. I'm pretty sure the guys at the mine site made fun of Matt for it!
Also shown is the famous "welcome to las vegas" sign, and the view from our room of the "beach"
Tuesday night solo dinner - went to Fleur in our hotel, sat at the bar, and had an amazing caprese, plus the sea bass, plus some wine. Very proud of myself for going out to eat. Wasn't nearly as awkward as I thought it would be!
After a Wednesday of relaxing outside by the pool, cooling off with Shark Week and Starbucks
Anniversary dinner outfit - trying a new peachy shade.
Matt drove around Nevada looking for a florist open at 9 pm. Awww.
One of many delectable parallel courses at Aureole.
Happy 3 Years!
Thanks, multiple waiters (seriously, we were not left alone for a second! Guess it was a slow night...)
Evening wandering - directly beside us was the Luxor
And beside it Excalibur
"I don't wanna be a princess!"
Then New York (fun hotel)
Thursday wanderings - all of the above hotels were not there 5 years ago...
Aria was one of my fav hotels - beautifully decorated and the least smokey.
Ohhhhh Paris (said like par-ee)...
Closest I'll get to France for now!
Okay this looks gross, but it was pretty much the best food I've ever eaten.
Crepe, with nutella, caramel, creme fraiche, bananas. Wow. I felt so sick after - totally worth it.
The Cosmopolitan hotel. Can you say SATC?
From Michael Kors in the forum shops - my 3rd anniversary gift - leather!
Dinner at Julian Serrano Tapas - wow this was also a great meal.
Just one of the great decor areas of the Aria hotel
Caprese, done with marmalade and pesto too, in layers
Oh we need to get dessert...
Jean Philippe gelato
Went to see the Cirque show "Ka" - so incredible
(though I was terrified the entire time that another person was going to fall off unintentionally)
Last day - brunch at Verandah
Why is food in the States often in such huge portions compared to Canada?
Aquarium and shark reef!
Have you ever pet a stingray? They are very soft.
(Hope got stung by a little one on her honeymoon...Jamie wouldn't pee on her...#lovefail)
Schools of fish
Wow scary when it goes above your head...
Oh yes, we did this. Going to 3 things was cheaper than just one - so we did the shark reef, Titanic, and Bodies. We had been to the reef before but Matt wanted to go again. Titanic was cool to see all the artifacts - my mom would have really liked it. I loved Bodies because it was so science-y and I never went when it was at the Science Centre here (Body Worlds). This one, however, was more explanation of all the body parts versus the bodies in random poses - much more educational. Matt, however, was pretty much traumatized by it. Wimp.
Lunch at "Gonzalez Gonzalez" in New York (I missed you when I saw this Dawn!)
They called this a "salad" - I ate 2 bites.
View of the Mirage
The Venetian (great shopping here)
Bellagio fountains set to Frank
So overall the trip was good for the fact that I didn't have to pay for half of it, we ate great food (but way too much), and saw a fun show.
BUT...We first went in 2008 and we definitely thought we hardly saw any of it. We were wrong - we saw all the best parts. Going back this time I realized how crowded, and hot, and smokey it truly is. Really, you can smoke everywhere, so most hotels you wanted to go in to either see the sights or escape the heat were really just hazy and made me feel sick. Especially if the stores or restaurants were right beside the casino, where people smoked the most. Also it was sad to see people just sit at the slots for hours on end like pod people. I'm not really a gambler, so I guess I don't really get the appeal. There are people on the streets everywhere trying to sell prostitutes and drugs, and it's so busy everywhere. Definitely won't be going back again just to see the sites!