by Rachael Sena
Las Vegas is known for gambling, booze and other scandalous behavior. When it comes to these memorable experiences, it’s no surprise that it happened in Vegas, but it didn’t quite stay in Vegas.
Alison Storm of The Traveling Journal and her four friends grew up in Sioux, Iowa. To maintain their lifelong friendship over long distances, these girls partake in an annual tradition that good friends do: the girls’ weekend getaway.
Alison and her friends were no strangers to Las Vegas. They usually ended up there for their getaway. So, to spice up their visit this time around, they looked for something adventurous.
They woke up before dawn to head out to the outskirts of Vegas to take their wild ride. As the sun rose, Alison and her friends were taking a scenic tour of Nevada’s desert in a hot air balloon.
But not even the calm sands and sun could distract the girls from the balloon pilot who was having anger management issues. Seriously, what could he be so angry about at 7 a.m. in the morning?
The girls could do nothing but ignore the angry captain and enjoy the sandy scenery that lay before them. As the irate pilot belittled his crew, the girls took in the glittering sunrise.
Like all good things, the ride had to come to an end. But as the pilot and his crew were ushering the balloon in for a smooth landing, a huge gust of wind pushed the balloon further across the desert.
The captain turned his fury onto his passengers as he instructed them to hit the deck, or the basket, as it should be called. From the bottom of the basket, Alison could see that they were rapidly heading for a huge boulder of death.
The pilot jumped out of the basket and the balloon roughly came to a stop. The landing was so jarring that Alison and her friends formed a human pretzel at the bottom of the basket.
The girls were in good spirits, though, and they laughed at the whole experience. The cheap champagne toast in front of the sunrise helped too.
Barry Maher was visiting Las Vegas several years ago for a small businesspeople convention. Since Barry is a motivational speaker, his job was to pump up the crowd with his closing keynote speech.
And he did just that. The crowd rewarded him with applause that echoed throughout the high-ceiling ballroom.
The executive director of the association that was hosting the convention approached Barry to congratulate him on a speech well done. He leaned close to Barry to speak over the applause. But he wasn’t counting on the applause dying down as soon as it had.
Loud and clear, the director said: “You just saved that goddamn, piece of shit meeting planner’s job. You were the only goddamn speaker at the entire goddamn, piece of shit convention that didn’t suck.”
Barry heard it and so did the rest of the convention. The director just so happened to have announced that piece of information into Barry’s lapel microphone.
Barry appreciated the “high praise” and contemplated putting “didn’t suck” as a testimonial on his website.
A slave to her education, Rachael is in her third year at the University of South Florida to earn a Bachelor’s of Art degree in magazine journalism. In her future, she envisions herself editing a fashion/photography/travel magazine (if such a thing exists). Her feisty attitude and short temper can be traced back to her Italian heritage. She knows a little Italian but plans to learn more while vacationing there someday. She is most at peace when writing, spending time with the boyfriend and watching movies about chicks that kick ass.