Drunk, Punched and Banned from Vegas

Larry dropped me off the very edge of the Phoenix Metro area, I stuck my thumb out and held a sign that read "VEGAS", an hour later I was in a pickup truck going all the way there. The driver told me stories of his days as a vagabond in Myrtle Beach and good rides he'd gotten while hitchhiking, his son was in the passenger seat and remained mostly quiet the whole ride.

Some how Texas came up, and he mentioned he didn't like Houston at all, "Too many Mondays there. You know what a Monday is? Another word for nigger, because nobody likes Mondays".

We hit the drive thru at a Burger King and he bought the three of us chocolate shakes, it hit the spot. Once we got to the Hoover Dam we hit some heavy tourist traffic, but after the big delay we hit the home stretch and were in Vegas in no time, he dropped me off a few miles from the strip and I got to walking, still daylight.

I grabbed some food at the McDonalds on the strip, thinking of where I may stay that night and looking forward to meeting up with Walter. It occurred to me that I had more complimentary room offers sitting in my email, I called the MGM and booked a room. I knew they would need a room deposit for incidental charges, but I headed there anyhow and sat in there business center on my laptop catching up on things assuming I'd figure that out later.

Jacob called from New Mexico, when he heard I had a room already he started driving towards Vegas, he had a credit card, deposit issue solved. Some time after midnight Walter called, his plane had landed and a bus took him to the Sahara casino, about 3 miles down the strip, he said he'd get to walking towards the MGM.

I decided I'd try to meet him half way, close to an hour later I was damn near the Sahara and hadn't seen him, Jacob rolled into town and picked me up and we headed back to the MGM where I'd originally told Walter we should meet, in the sportsbook. We connected there, checked in, and the three of us went up to the room, Walter was tired from 24 hours of travel, starting in London.

None the less we caught up, a shallow flask made it's way around the room twice, and soon we passed out.

In the morning we made our way across the street to THEhotel at Mandalay Bay and checked in. Shortly after we went to the Hooters Casino where we thought we could score a deal signing up for their Players Club card, we played the slots on their dime which totalled in pennies of real dollars, during this my friend Mandy came through, a Vegas local, I gave her and her boyfriend keys to Mandalay Bay so they could use the well known pool there.

We had our wings and a couple cups of beer, Jacob, Walter and I, then more or less made our way through another casino and back to THEhotel where Aaron and Jessica had just arrived, coming in from San Diego.

They had a 30 pack of beer in tow, along with a handle of vodka and water bottle of vodka as well, an apparent gift from Christa for me, she's a girl in San Diego I'd met a handful of times who'd went to school there with Jessica.

I'd put money on the Wizards/Cavs game, so after some drinking in the room we headed to the sports book to catch the second half, I won my money in a close call towards the end, some excited drunken fun that propelled us into my most memorable Vegas night, which I ironically enough, don't remember all the details of.

We headed to the Bellagio where an open bar was that Jacob had heard of, Aaron and Jessica decided to get food along the way and were to meet us there. Once at the door of the club, Jacob and I were turned away, me for having open shoes and shorts, Jacob just for open shoes. The three of us turned to the penny slots to get our drinks and waited for Aaron and Jessica.

Aaron had the proper dress code when he arrived, so him and Walter headed in for free glasses of wine while the rest of us laughed at the slots, Jacob with a beer, myself a martini that became a double when Jessica turned down the drink that should have been Walter's had he not left.

We did a clothing switcharoo in the bathroom after the guys had their fix, it was Jacob, Jessica and my turn to drink the free wine. We drank three glasses a piece in the span of the 15 minutes left of the open bar and stumbled out, I spilled wine on my shirt and went to the bathroom to throw some water on it. Things get foggier after this, but I've managed to piece together the rest, more or less.

I believe the next step was going to the sports book again to watch the games that Aaron and Jessica had bet on, including the ball game that own them money all in the 8th and 9th inning with 5 or 6 runs scored out of nowhere.

Next thing, we were back in the room drinking more beers, myself "out of control" on all other accounts. I had it in me to go the craps table, apparently dumping the majority of my cash, which at that point was about 30 or 40 dollars. We headed back up to the room, but once at our floor I remained on the elevator on my own and slipped back to the casino level on my own.

As drunk as I get, I wandered to the poker table looking for some action, it was around 4am at this point, one table was being played at. I perused the table and starting fishing through my little bag for money, perhaps forgetting all but some stray ones remained.

Apparently it was at this time that I got to talking. Whatever words I chained together formed thoughts that at the very least one guy didn't like so much, because before I knew it there was a fist in my face and I stumbled back on the ground. I recall standing up with some blood dripping on my shirt, a dumb smile on face, security swarming in.

Next thing I was in some back hallway lit brightly with fluorescent lights, sitting in a chair. They were telling me I had said some pretty upsetting things about the guy's girlfriend. They asked me if I wanted to press charged against him, I declined. They told me I was being banned from not only Mandalay Bay, but all MGM properties in Las Vegas, which fairly encompasses the bulk of the strip.

I questioned them, curious why myself, the one punched in the face was being banned, they told me the puncher would be as well, I didn't care too much for his fate though. I never did discover or remember what words I said to deserve it, but being punched and banned has to mean something.

They led me to the cashier cage where I turned a sole blue chip in for a dollar, I suppose from the earlier craps game, then guided me up to the room where I was to collect my things. I grabbed my backpack and they guided me off the property, assuring me that if I came back, "you will be going to jail".

I wandered into the night, then back into the lights of the strip, a few drops of blood still on my shirt and shorts.

Some time went by and I decided to throw on my nathans hotdog hat and attempt to wander in the back entrance directly to the elevator banks to sneak back up to the room and get some sleep. I made it inside, up the elevator, to the room, took off my backpack, the phone rang. I picked it up amongst the darkness and slumber of four friends, at this same time heavy knocks came to the door. The voice on the phone simply said to go to the door, I did.

There were the security guards from before, even more upset then when I'd last seen them, "What did I tell you? If you came back, you're going to jail", I asked if I could grab my bag on the way out, they said no, cuffed me behind my back, and off to the elevators we went.

I found myself in somewhat of a cell, a young hooker cuffed beside me, it wasn't her first time. She assured me I wouldn't be going to jail, that a trooper would come down and just write me a ticket and that I'd perhaps eventually have to pay a fine. The cop came in and did just that, write me a ticket with a court date he said I'd likely not have to attend if I instead chose to pay a yet to be determined amount over the phone.

A couple of the security guards brought me back to my room to collect my bag. Somewhere in the mix my little blue bag went missing, which is essentially my wallet. I was sure that they'd took it out of my pockets when they brought me to the cell, but they said that wasn't the case. I never did find it, and still believe it's in there somewhere.

They once again guided me off the property warning me again not to come back, the sky was just showing signs of the incoming sun. I went as far as the MGM casino itself just down the road and wandered in despite their warnings, I figured news couldn't travel too fast to the other properties, and I headed for the hidden nook of the business center undetected. There I sat falling in and out of sleep until sometime in the late morning.

I called Aaron, the four of them weren't exactly pleased with me, and still in the dark really. I met them there and explained what had happened, they had gone to security as well to inquire. They were still going to be allowed to stay in the room another night, but I wouldn't be able to check into the Luxor the next night seeing as I was forbidden from that property now as well.

They parked the car in the lot of the Tropicana, a safe zone casino, and I slept off what I could while they headed for the pool and so on. I woke up and wandered away for the strip in search of cheap food, I had only less then 10 dollars now. A gas station burrito did the trick.

Some more wandering and the day went by until I met up with Aaron and Jessica again, after some debating we landed at the Rio where we all placed bets on various games, I put five bucks on the Lakers game leaving myself with a single dollar bill, and two half of a dollar that had been ripped in half.

We then went to downtown Vegas, specifically the Golden Nugget. Aaron paid for the three of us at a buffet, then they played craps while I watched the game for which my life savings rode on. Before it ended Walter and Jacob met up with us and we all watched as the Lakers covered the 8.5 point spread against the Nuggets and set me back in the high life.

We watched the Freemont light show and a simple street magician, then headed back to the Rio to collect our winnings, $9.50 for myself. I cocooned myself in the backseat with blankets covering the windows and they left the car at the Luxor for me to sleep, and hopefully be undetected by security, they walked back to the suite at THEhotel.

I slept the night away, careful not to move around too much and be discovered, I wasn't, and in the morning they met me at the car and we drove off after a quick donut stop. Jacob had gone on his way, but Aaron, Jessica, Walter and I rode out the 8 hour or so ride to Sacramento. We listened and laughed a few times as Jessica retold the story to various people on the phone along the way.

We got back and I took the first hot shower I'd had in over a couple weeks, I never got a chance in Vegas and the weeks prior to that I was at Larry's where he didn't have hot water at the time. We closed the night with pizza, beer and a movie.

Tomorrow or the next day the idea is to hitchhike, Walter is likely aiming for Berkeley, and I've yet to decide on a direction. I have a couple ideas, but the best one will surface when the moment comes.

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