well i'd like to visit the moon
on a rocket ship high in the air
yes, i'd like to visit the moon
but i don't think i'd like to live there
though i'd like to look down at the earth from above
i would miss all the places and people i love
so although i might like it for one afternoon
i don't want to live on the moon
and so ernie would sing as he lay in bed at night. i never gave much thought about it when i was younger, and didn't even think too deeply on it when laurie put it on the cd she made for me a few months ago. not until this weekend, as i was looking out from the 10th story window in our suite at the venetian, the largest hotel in the world, did i understand what ernie meant.
we saw 'O', the cirque du soleil's aquabatics show, similar to CATS but a little more eerie and, certainly, wetter; we ate at elegant restaurants, where everything from the orange juice to the prime rib is among the best you will find anywhere; we lived in a palace that felt as though we were walking through the height of the renaissance, a cultured royalty; we enjoyed cacti and chocolates; and, best of all, we watched the glorious fountain shows at the bellagio.
we also walked past stores selling such fine apparel that only a few items were on sale, and where i could have spend my entire earnings from 2007 without difficulty; past billboards and clubs calling out with promises of fame, wealth, and sexuality; past people repeatedly gambling over $100 on a hand of cards; where everywhere i looked i was being told that i'm not rich enough, cool enough, wild enough, elegant enough, hot enough, fun enough, good enough.
after a while, you start to wonder if maybe that's true.
we enjoyed ourselves: we savored the food, enjoyed the lights, appreciated the architecture, and drank a $4 bottle of water. as i looked out over the unreal reality below, where people from around the world come to see this amazing spot like nowhere else, i felt like ernie. i had danced on a moonbeam, and i was ready to come back to earth.
after saying goodbye to my parents, i slapped my 'tally hall' sticker-magnet back onto my car, stopped at in-n-out burger--which seems to get better every time i go there--and went home.
on the way, i passed a billboard for 'parowanprophet.com,' displaying a mushroom cloud and advertising 'survival kits available.'
so it's not just vegas that's weird.
i also decided that i want to come to vegas when i'm married.
that's probably just the george bailey in me.