newest entry 2092-10-06 7:31 p.m.

Back from Vegas. The contrast between our flight home and our flight out was dramatic.

We flew out on Friday morning, while JFK (and large chunks of New York in general) still had no power. It was a tiny Vegas miracle (god bless us all, everyone!) that we were able to fly at all, but for some reason they cancelled every flight out of JFK except ours.

Terminal 7 had looked like a refugee camp, with hundreds of hindered layover folks sleeping on the ground.

Today's flight was a cakewalk. I started an Agatha Christie mystery (The ABC Murders) and before I even found out who the murderer is, we'd landed in JFK.

Our last night in Vegas was kinda the best. We went just one block off the strip and entered a different biosphere: a local tavern, Ellis Island, where they have nightly karaoke.

It was the Platonic ideal of a seedy bar for down-at-heel gamblers: moldy red banquettes, haggard-looking waitresses, slot machine zombies who didn't really look like they were having fun so much as compulsively feeding their paychecks to the machines one quarter at a time.

Clearly, the karaoke folks were regulars--there was much joshing and familiarity, and a demonstrated facility with the mic. The majority of folks sang Sinatra tunes, most memorably a Spanish version of "My Way".

Then Monkey astonished me with a gutsy rendition of "Take Me To The River." He really brought down the house. I've known him for 5 years now, and I didn't know he could sing like that--his usual singing style is much more laid back.

It's interesting that I came back from my wholesome family North Carolina trip feeling all stressed out, and I've come back from Sin City feeling really healthy and rejuvenated. Who can explain what really feeds the soul?

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