Thursday, March 29, 2012

Vegas, Baby! - Part I

Our flight over was uneventful for the most part. I bought a magazine at the airport (somewhat of a tradition of mine before a flight), but having arrived at the airport way too early, I finished the magazine before I boarded. My plan was to start reading the Hunger Games on the plane, but was distracted with the entertainment of watching Ming play his PVZs (Plant Vs. Zombies) on his iPad. Before that, he schooled me in a few games of Connect Four. (I let him win... ). Somehow, the three hours zipped by and we landed in LA. 

We had 1.5 hours to get to our connecting flight, which seems like a lot of time. But when you're at LAX, with airport staff that aren't very helpful... somehow, those 1.5 hours were spent exiting the airport, trying to find a different terminal, and going through security all over again. But... I'm writing all that just for memory sake ("Remember that time when...?"). We did make it on our next flight no problem and made it into Las Vegas as expected.

Cabbed it to the hotel and quickly checked in. Welcome to our humble home of four days - Vdara

This is our livingroom. Which is connected to the bedroom. On the other side, the kitchen and dining table.

Don't ring our doorbell. We won't answer.

This was our beautiful lobby.

Because we arrived at night, and without having much to eat on the plane, we were starving. I had raved about this restaurant in the Palazzo, and I really wanted Ming to try it. We rushed ourselves out to the strip. On our way over, I was still able to take snap a few of these on the way.

To get to the strip from Vdara, we walked through the Bellagio. The garden was adorn with Easter decorations. The vibrant colours and the invitation of Spring made me instantly... happy. 

Ming doesn't take photos nor did he carry a camera, but a few times, he would give me directions on where to take mine. "Here, you should take it from here," he pointed. From his angle, was the next photo. (Sorry about the fuzziness. We were in a bit of a rush to eat).

The other two times I was in Vegas, I never got to watch the Bellagio fountain. This time, I did. Doesn't matter that I've seen it from afar or seen many photos of it before... and have seen many other water fountains before too... I loved it. I still found the grandiose beauty of it.

We finally made it to Sushi Samba. I ate at this restaurant the last two times I was in Vegas, and I thoroughly enjoyed it both times. Luckily, there was only the two of us to seat, so getting a table was easier. The restaurant was packed. Why do I love this restaurant? It's a fusion of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian food. If you don't like fusion, this restaurant isn't for you. For me, I love Japanese food... this was like Japanese food with "a kick and a punch". 

Just like the past two times, I ordered a "sampler". Basically, have them choose off the menu what we should eat. This makes it easier and each dish comes as a surprise. I specified no wasabi 'cause Ming doesn't eat it or anything that touches it. Ming thanked me later for remembering to order no wasabi. Well... what fun would it be if I had to eat everything myself? Hmm...actually, that wouldn't be such a bad idea. But, I'm nice. So I shared.

Our drinks came first. My watermelon drink was so refreshing. Ming's drink brought out his asian gene. 

Tuna Tataki. With a spin. It had a fragrant leaf underneath, to be eaten all together. Ming wasn't sure about the herby flavour of it. I didn't mind it so much.

Tuna tacos with a spicy foam sauce.

Calamari. Also with a kick.

Peruvian corn. I love it. It's sweet and chewy. The seared miso sablefish was our favorite. It was absolutely melt-in-your-mouth.

Three different types of rolls : 1) Carnaval - shrimp, avacado, yellowtail tartar, crispy rice paper. 2) BoBo Brazil - seared wagyu beef, avacado, kaiware, shiso, red onion, chimichurri. 3) Rainbow Dragon - freshwater eel, red bell pepper, cucumber, mango, avacado.

I think we both agreed the Carnaval roll was our favorite. I think it was the most refreshing. It was different with the crispy rice paper versus seaweed. The shiso leaf in the Bobo Brazil might have slightly overpowered everything else in the roll. It was all still very yummy. And different. And new.

Who takes unflattering photos of other people eating? Umm, I do. 

Hey, it was one amazing dinner. Had to document it all.

The night ended up with us being completely satisfied in our stomachs. We made a trip into Walgreens to pick up a few essentials for our room, and then we headed back to chill. On the way back, raindrops pitter-pattered here and there. Wet floors + me = slippage. I fell in the middle of the sidewalk, banging my knee against the cement and scraping my left elbow completely raw. I have no idea why I'm so prone to falls. I never see it coming. The next minute, I'm on the ground. I wasn't going to let it get me down, and brushed it off. 

Later on that night in the hotel room, Ming said he doesn't want to travel with me again. I asked why. He said that I'm too prone to accidents or getting hurt, which may mean me stuck in a hotel room not being able to go anywhere and him having to stay behind too. I told him that he was free to roam without me. He said, he wouldn't do that. Couldn't leave me alone. 

That's when I realized I was in good hands of my travel buddy.

Or, so I thought.....

(To be continued... ).

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