Elena and I find ourselves in Las Vegas for a medical conference. We are fortunate to be at a beautiful hotel/resort; The Cosmopolitan.
Elena is very busy with a medical conference on chronic pain. She's learning lots of new things that will help her to serve her patients better.I find myself in the enviable position of "having time on my hands." Of course I have spent time by the pool, ate some great meals, and saw some incredible sights.
Elena and I do not gamble except on the stock market. We look with fascination as people gamble. We both understand that old saying: "The house always wins." Most of the people in the casino have scant chance of winning but they keep coming.
I have spent time reflecting on the miracle that this city is. Elena gave it the nickname of Saudi Arabia because it is so hot and desolate.
This is a remote dessert area with nothing much going for it. Some desserts have billions of barrels of oil underneath. Some desserts have minerals under them or a strategic location. The area around Las Vegas has none of these attributes.
How did this modern and rich city arise in such a hopeless area? Elena posed this question to me. I answered her that it began with a few people who had a vision.Gambling was illegal in most of the rest of the USA. They made it legal in Nevada.
What followed was an invasion of gangsters who got the gaming business started. The Binnion family also started casinos. They attracted people with big name entertainers. Howard Hughes then made Las Vegas his home and bought up several casino properties. Young innovators like Steve Wynn came along and turned this dessert kingdom into a world class venue.
Las Vegas is much more than "Sin City" or a mecca for gambling, prostitution, etc. It is also a place to just come,relax, and have fun. The people are friendly and nice. They make you feel at home.
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