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Spent most of the last week at a work meeting in Vegas.  I'm sure you all know that I'm not a fan, but when work calls, one has to do what one has to do.  We met as a team, with folks coming from Salt Lake, Atlanta, and even as far as the Philippines.  It's been at least a couple of years since we all got together in person, so it was nice to be able to see everyone and catch up.

We stayed at the Venetian and Palazzo Resort, which is now affiliated with IHG.  And I have to admit, the whole trip was better than I expected.  My room was quiet, dinners were very nice, and the casino was not as loud nor as smoky as I remembered.  And despite gaining a few pounds (damn Emeril!) I got plenty of exercise just walking back and forth from room to meeting room and back again.  I even took my jump rope along to get in a little extra work.

While we did manage to have plenty of fun, there was also plenty of work.  Long days talking about goals, planning for next year, and sharing ideas.  So it was nice to be able to have nice dinners and activities in the evenings. 

I thought it would be nice to share some photos, so I'll start with my room, which was a suite.  It had a great view, a TV in every room, and a fax machine.  It even had a remote control for closing the drapes and raising the shade.  But I have to say that I liked the comfy bed the most.

Tuesday Night Activities - Dinner at Wolfgang Puck's Postrio (it will come as no surprise to either Pinky or Inge that I had the linguine and clams), followed by a Gondola ride with Salvatore the Gondoleer.

Wednesday Night Activities - Dinner at Pinot Brasserie, a French restaurant.  I tried escargot (yum), fois gras (not so yum - you know me and textures), a sheep's milk cheese from the Basque region of France (who knew there were Basques in France) that came with dried fruit and honeycomb, and Lupe de Mer, otherwise known as Sea Bass.  My favorite meal of the trip.

We followed up dinner with going to see Blue Man Group.  The show was ok - a little disjointed, but it's performance art, so maybe I just didn't get it.  I did like that the creepy blue guys came out and mingled with the audience afterward, though, so I managed to get a shot of one of them.  I'm not sure which was more odd, Blue Man Group, or the Convention of Hasidic Jews (seriously - saw them every day).

After that, we walked over to the Palazzo and got some gelato.  Mine was chocolate with macadamia nuts.  And it had to be authentic, because it came with a sugar wafer that said "Ciao" on it, right?

Thursday - we worked in the morning, then had lunch at (Emeril) Lagasse's Stadium - it's a sports bar that has a bunch of sports memorbilia - signed jerseys and such.  I had the fish and chips, which I have to say was de-lish.

After lunch we were given a 2-hour tour of the Venetian/Palazzo complex.  We got to see some of their fancy schmancy suites (despite the finery in mine, it was not nearly as nice as the ones we toured) , as well as the Pool area, and the "Heart of the House", which is the area for employees.


From there, it was back to the room to grab our bags, and then off to the airport.  We got home very late Thursday, and I am plenty pooped.  Not only that, but I feel like I need to de-tox from all the rich food.  Other than that, it was really a nicer trip than I anticipated.  Not that I'm anxious to run off to Vegas again anytime soon.


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