Las Vegas. Also known as Sin City and for very obvious reasons. Every available space seems to be glittering or blinking – inviting you to come in for a closer look, just close enough to get their claws on you and then you’re pretty much stuck there. Whatever your vice is, it’s here and available, so long as you can pay the price.

See, that’s one important epiphany right there: Sin is expensive. A lap dance from a busty blonde/brunette/redhead/insert preference here will cost you $50 which lasts about 3 minutes or less. (Maybe request for Inna Gadda Da Vida or Bohemian Rhapsody for the song to get your money’s worth!). A drink is anywhere between $10 to $40, good meals go for $60 to as much as $100 per person. So yeah, maybe hold off on the lust, avarice and gluttony for the meantime. Now I understand what the nuns in my school used to say when they say that being good has its rewards.

Then again the city does attract more than 3 million visitors each year – both local and international. It is the 3rd most visited city in the world and the income generated from the tourism industry can go up to millions of dollars. This isn’t surprising though as one can see just how quickly people lose their money on the tables or the machines.

Maybe I’m being a bit harsh seeing that my only experience of Vegas is along the strip. But I can’t help thinking this when there is really nothing else to see after you go past the huge replicas of the Eiffel tower, statue of Liberty and the fountains. Hotel hopping and seeing the volcanoes, fountains, etc is fun but that can be done in a day. The exhibits are nice but very expensive – like everything else. After all of that, I honestly feel quite empty. Or maybe that’s my pocket and wallet.

That’s another thing that I realized: Vegas makes you feel that you are not giving enough. Not enough fun, not enough alcohol, not enough money, etc. Vegas made me feel old, poor and boring. I spent a majority of the time inside my hotel room. Well, there was a heatwave too so I wasn’t insane enough to venture out during the day.

Perhaps I am getting old for Vegas. Perhaps my taste for travel experience has evolved. If anything, this trip has given me several epiphanies and I will take that as a good takeaway from the city of sin. Inasmuch as Las Vegas is a hub of transgressions, it seems to still be aware of the people who would like to see the beauty beyond the blinking lights, glitter and daze caused by too much alcohol. While some people would prefer to see Vegas as a dolled up and glamorous woman, I prefer to see the lady without the makeup who smiles as she sips coffee in the morning – crazy hair and all.

That being said, I wave to the plethora of Elvises on the strip, blow a kiss to the Marilyns and say Viva Las Vegas!