My old friend, Duong, came to pick me up at the San Diego airport on the 31st. Duong was, and still is in my group of close friends from middle school. We hadn’t seen each other for 4.5 years, since I left for college the summer of 2005 – how time flies. We left almost immediately with two more friends of hers. Direction: Las Vegas. So was *everyone* else. It took us 8 hours, instead of the usual 4. The traffic was absolutely insane – it was at times as bad as sitting in a cab in Times Square – it drives you nuts ’cause you are *not* going anywhere, and it seems like it’d be 5 times faster walking.

Back

Front

The line

We, fortunately, made it to Vegas safe and sound. Unlike these guys – and many others – who were pouring gallons of water into their overheated engine.

(btw, going back on the 2nd was just as bad)

Have never seen a more artificial city where you can let yourself be so superficial. It was the same almost everywhere, casino after casino, mall after mall – a show of repetition and imitation. All the casinos/hotels have names like Paris, Venetian, New York, Egypt, etc. And I don’t want to pass judgment, but I saw some of the saddest people there. What’s so fun about sitting for hours in front of a machine and mechanically pressing one button every two seconds with your fingers?

That said, it was a hell lot of fun for New Year’s Eve. We did not go to any fancy clubs. We were just outside rubbing our arms with thousands of people, counting down to the new year, to the new decade. Each hotel had its own fireworks, so we kept turning left and right to catch the show. For me, that’s what new year’s eve’s about: lights, sound, people, the more the merrier.

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