This past weekend was Labor day weekend, so a few of the model building friends and some of their friends set out to Arizona for a weekend of drinking, shooting, gambling, and water sports. One of the model building guy’s parents have a vacation house cross the river from Needles California that was built last year, so he invited us out there for the weekend.

Dave came and picked Terry and I up around 9 in the morning on Friday. With three corgis in tow; we head out towards our first stop, Barstow.

mmmmMMMmmm the original Del Taco. Barstow is home to the original Del Taco, and granted the prices for standard tacos and various other foods are higher; the proportions and quality of food more than make up for it. Having our fill, we piled back into the Tahoe and headed towards the house.

It took us about an hour and a half to get to Barstow, then another two to get to Needles then a few minutes to get to the house; as it was just over the river on the Arizona side. It was hot. Temperature gauges showed 111 degrees. Once in the house, the dogs quickly rehydrate. Dave’s parents are there as they were hanging out at the house a few days before we got there, but were planning on leaving and staying with family also vacationing in Arizona.

The house has 4 bedrooms, three bathrooms, an attached garage, large capacity freezer in the garage, drink refrigerator in the walk way from the garage, and a HUGE kitchen. Outside, there is a detached garage where all the water crafts are stored. There is an additional room and bathroom there as well. In the garage were 3 boats and two jet skis. After we get settled in, we head out to the local supermarkets for food and drink shopping. We came back and made jello shots while I started the prep work for dinner.

I made my version of Chicken Marsala. The chicken thighs are boned and flattened out and then marinated in Marsala wine, along with salt, pepper, basil, oregano, and fresh garlic. The chicken is then pan fried while the sauce is made. A chopped shallot is browned, some chopped prosciutto is thrown in, followed by a jar of alfredo sauce, the rest of the marinade used with the chicken, and most of the bottle of Marsala. The sauce is finished off with some chopped olives and heavy cream. Linguine is cooked and drained. And with that, dinner is ready.

After dinner, we start up Rock band, but our first set is cut short because of the amazing lightening show going on outside the house. So we all head outside, and it’s pouring now, but the night sky is being lit up by flashes of lightening and the occasional boom of thunder.

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Angel, Nickel, and Lockell arrive a little past midnight. They settled in and we hang out for a little bit before calling it a night.

The next morning we got up, had some breakfast, the headed out to the river. The first trip to the river took Terry, me, and the jet skis out. We put the jet skis in the water and Terry and I took off to find a suitable beach space for the rest of the group. Dave went back to get the boat and the rest of the people. While we waited, we played around with the jet skis and had some fun.

We saw Dave and everyone else in the boat coming up the river so Terry and I joined them. Unfortunately, the antics of Terry and I on jet skis soaked everyone on the boat as we caused some waves to hit it. Well, they’re on a frigging boat, and they didn’t expect to get a little wet? We found a nice little spot to set up and beach the boat and jet skis. Holy crap the water is cold, something around 60-65 degrees. It felt damn good in the hot sun however.

Dave’s parents showed up with the speed boat and we had 4 of the 5 water crafts from the garage in the water. We started running into problems with one of the jet skis as the fuel gauge said it was out of fuel, and looking into the tank and checking out the jet ski, we found no indications that it was empty. So we ran with it for a while until it just up and seized while Erin and Michelle were on it. The battery died, and it wouldn’t start up again; so Dave came back to camp to grab a rope and tow the dead in the water jet ski back. Still, we had one working jet ski, and two boats. At around 4 or 5 we could see storm clouds forming, so we got ready and started to pack up. We broke camp and Dave and crew headed back while I tied up the dead jet ski and got ready to tow it and Terry to the marina.

When Dave returned, he was having trouble backing the jet ski trailer down the narrow ramp to load up the jet skis. So I hopped in. I fared no better and the guy waiting in line to load up ended up helping me out of frustration. We got the jet skis loaded up and headed back home. We got things settled back at the house and parked the jet skis and then headed into the house.

Hooray, the nekkid chef! We picked up a slab of NY strip steak and cut steaks out. Angel trimmed off the excess fat and seasoned the steaks. I cut them a little too thin thinking that I would run out of meat, but in hind sight, I could have just measured the damn thing and cut accordingly. Cutting the meat thin also worked against me later when I ended up over cooking everything. *sigh* In my defense, it’s a little difficult getting used to different cookware and heat temperatures of various grills and ranges. I made a steak sauce and heated up some creamy tomato basil soup with the remainder of the cut up slices of sausages we had to snack on while on the river. Dinner wasn’t too bad, well, I keep telling myself that anyhow.

We squeezed all 10 people around the kitchenette to eat dinner. And just like his owner, Duke can just pass out anywhere.

We played rockband for a little bit, but by 10, people were already heading towards their rooms to crash. Everyone pretty much went to sleep around 11:30. While flipping through channels, G4 was playing Flash Gordon (yes, that horrific ’80s movie with Timothy Dalton); so Dave and I ended up watching that until it ended. We crashed after, which was about 12:30 to 1. Being out in the sun on the river just sapped the energy from everyone.

We woke up around 7 or so to go shooting. In the car was a 9mm, .38, .22, and a 20 gauge shotgun. I grabbed some cans and bottles from the recycling bin and filled them with water; and off we went to the hills behind Dave’s parent’s vacation house. We all take turns shooting the various weapons at various things. An idiot of a quad rider rode right up through our line of fire. Moron. Here are some shots of Terry firing at some water filled Arizona ice tea cans.

That damn shot gun was f-ing accurate. I placed two Arizona ice tea cans on top of each other and was able to shoot off the top one without hitting the bottom one, then shot out the bottom one with my second shot. Damn fun stuff. Here is Angel shooting the empty Marsala wine bottle.

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Dave shooting the 9mm; which was a fun little weapon if it didn’t jam every now and again.

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After about an hour of shooting at random things, it started to get pretty warm, so pack up everything and headed back to the house. I went and took a short hour long nap before waking up to head up to Vegas with Angel and Nickel… Ok, this goes back to the previous day of river borne fun. While attempting to get on the jet ski with Angel, Nicky lost her balance and grabbed on to Angel, pulling him into the water with her, causing him to lose his glasses. The river isn’t the clearest thing in the world to lose anything in, so the glasses were gone. He called lenscrafters to find the closest location, there were two. Humbolt CA, and Las Vegas NV. So this is why we were heading up to Las Vegas, a roughly 100 mile trip north of where we were. No biggie. Angel loves Vegas, and I hadn’t been back there in 4 years so I was eager to go. Plus, I offered to drive as Angel needs his glasses to drive. So we took Angel’s parent’s CRV up to Vegas for the afternoon.

Here is the Vegas skyline from about 11 miles east, right outside the Lenscrafters shop.

After getting the glasses and getting a light snack from The Spicy Pickle, we drove over to the strip. It has been about 4 or so years since I was last in Vegas so quite a bit has changed. Vegas is constantly evolving, growing, and changing. I finally got to see the Wynn and a few of the other new hotels. We headed into the Wynn and went to the Terrace cafe for lunch, sitting outside so that we could enjoy the view of the swimming pool.

Having eaten a fairly heavy bowl of soup just an hour ago, I wasn’t overly hungry, so I ordered a smoked salmon dish. Damn tasty! This plus the wonderful view, just made it so damn relaxing. My lunch was topped off with a nice creme brulee.

Some pictures around the Wynn and Palazzo. When we walked from the Palazzo to the Venetian, I heard a woman’s voice call my name, so I turned around to hear her scream that it was indeed me. And then she ran full force jumping into my arms and attempting to wrap her legs around me. As short as she was, I still had trouble holding her up. She’s an old friend from my Sacramento State days in the Computer Science department. I hadn’t seen her in well over 6 years. We chatted for a bit and exchanged phone numbers then headed off in our separate ways. I gambled for about an hour at Harrahs playing pagow poker and losing about 55 bucks. Since we needed to meet up with Dave and the gang in Laughlin tonight, we headed back around 5 towards the Wynn to get the car; then started the fun desert drive south to Laughlin.

The drive to Laughlin was fairly uneventful. Angel could see now, so he sat up front as navigator while Nickel read her books in the back. We got to Laughlin after about 2 hours and beat Dave and the rest of the gang to the Golden Nugget where we have plans to eat dinner; so I found the cheapest paigow table and plopped myself down.

There were two ladies sitting to my left and a Mexican lady sitting to my right. The seat at the end on the right was empty, and the seat on the left end was another lady that kept fairly quiet. The two next to me on the left were mother and daughter, drinking and having a good ole time. They’re from Anaheim. Lucky me. I’m just sitting there making little jokes with the women and having fun. Eventually, the lady on the far left end leaves. Our Hispanic dealer swaps out with a geriatric one and to my shock, the slow game got even slower. He was nice and fun to joke with. Eventually, the far left seat was replaced by a lady from Vegas, who was obviously buzzing if not drunk. Drunk anchor lady asks if I was Hawaiian. *sigh* stupid hicks. The she pointed at two random Asian guys standing not far behind me saying I looked like my friends. I turned around, looked at them, then turned back around telling the drunk that I have no idea who they were. Then joked that not all us Asians know each other, or are related to each other – which got a pretty big laugh. Our dealer changed again, this time we had what I could only explain as Pipi Longstockings and what she would look like today… Got another laugh from that one. And after playing for a bit, Dave and crew showed up. Now I had to turn around and point out to the drunk lady and the other people that these were the friends I was with. Coincidentally, not a single one of them were Asian as I was the only Asian on the trip. This got yet another big laugh. I played another few rounds before packing up and heading downstairs for dinner.

The casino/restaurant was right on the river and we had a view of the river from the restaurant. Outside there were ducks and raccoons. People were feeding the raccoons.

Dinner was fairly uneventful; most folks through our waitress was a little bit of a bitch, but she really didn’t have to work for the tip as an 18% gratituity was already included on our bill. After dinner, we returned home, finished the jello shots and relaxed while watching tv for the rest of the night. Everyone was pretty tired so we just sat there. Hugo and Duke are starting to get along better. The two of them spent most of the time playing with one another.

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Duke really loves Hugo…

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Hugo cannot get a break, even just trying to relax on the couch he cannot see to get Duke off his back… literally.

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The next day we woke up and cleaned the house, washed the sheets, and got the place ready to be closed up for the next month until Dave’s parents return. We packed up the car and headed out around 12:30. The drive back was fairly uneventful, traffic was a pain as people were returning from the labor day weekend trips. We stopped by the Barstow Del Taco on the way back; and got home around 5pm. Pretty good trip over all. This trip just reminds me that I need to do a Vegas trip some time….

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. dhcloud

    And while you went to Vegas… and Terry slept all day… the rest of us went on a long boat ride down the river… almost to Havasu, swam for a while… and saw naked white old man ass before he dropped down to mount his weathered girl. lol

  2. charlie

    next trip to vegas? couldn’t get enough of the scenery, eh?

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