Monday, December 29, 2014

an impromptu trip to Reno

The year is ending on a high note as my parents and I went on a two-day trip to Reno for a concert over the weekend. The trip was almost completely free. :-)

I'll start with some background: my mother frequently writes for a Chinese culinary magazine called Distinctive Taste. The magazine's general manager recently gave away two tickets for a Denise Ho and Shirley Kwan concert to each of the major contributors. The hotel costs were covered, meaning it was an all-expenses-paid vacation!

Day 1

The first stop was Eileen's house in El Cerrito as we had some things to give her. The Tangs were thrilled to see us even though we couldn't stay long. Our party also went to the Costco in Citrus Heights for gas and samples, as well as an antique store in the area. It wasn't too late when we arrived in Reno despite the traffic.

We went to the Grande Exposition Hall to pick up the tickets after checking into Silver Legacy Reno. The venue was conveniently located just across the street. I had planned to explore the hotel on my own or play RuneScape while Mom and Dad attended the gig. However, the general manager saw me with my parents and gave us a third ticket so we could listen to the concert together. That was definitely super nice of him.

The three of us played the slots for about 15 minutes before returning to the venue. The attendance was huge. Everyone was given glow sticks at the door; that was really cool. The songs were largely in Cantonese; although we didn't understand most of the lyrics, the concert was fairly enjoyable.

The event lasted longer than expected, ending around 11 p.m. All of us were too excited to go to sleep just yet and spent another two hours at the slots before heading back to our room. It was well past 1 a.m. when we finally got to bed!

Day 2

Having had so much fun at the casino the day before, we decided to hit the slots again after lunch. Our luck wasn't spectacular as we lost around $36 in total, but as the saying goes, the house always wins. Well, almost always.

Speaking of which, Mom and I bumped into Lily from Henry's film club while at the casino. I also got to meet her daughters Jessica and Jasmine. Talk about a small world.

It was soon time to begin our drive home. Dad found three antique stores along the route; Mom bought some fine china that she liked, along with several high-quality sweaters. As per tradition, the three of us also went to WinCo Foods in Vacaville for groceries. The last stop was a Burger King in Fairfield for dinner. The place had some bad Yelp reviews, but we ate there anyway as it was pretty late.

Conclusions

While I'm not a big fan of concerts, this one was no doubt memorable. I'd say playing the slots was overall the best part of the trip even though we lost a record $36 this time. The vacation was quite awesome despite being only one night long, especially considering that most of the costs were covered. I've posted some pictures on Flickr.

Currently listening to: "Dela" by Johnny Clegg

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