Apachecon, post conference

At the moment, I’m in the air on the way to Memphis. I had hoped to leave a little earlier, and now I really wish that I had done so, because the guy next to me is snoring like a water buffalo. But the guy at the ticket counter in Las Vegas said that there was a good chance I would not make my flight out of Detroit, if I went that way, and then I’d be overnight in Detroit, which is hardly my idea of fun.

So here I am.

Yesterday, with the conference over, and nothing pressing to do, I found myself actually relaxed for the first time in longer than I can remember. I had no deadlines, no obligations, and no particular plans.

I went up to Comdex, in the hopes of getting on the wireless network and talking with a person or to. I had come up with a possible ending to the novel that I’m working on with CJD, and wanted to tell him my idea. I’m not entirely sure how he felt about it, because the network went down after I told him. But I’ve written out the closing chapter as I see it, and we’ll see what happens.

After that, I took the shuttle downtown and met Dean and Owen for lunch at Planet Hollywood, in one or other of the casinos. I think it was in Caesars. There are so many of them, and they all have a lot in common, but each seems to have their own thing that makes it stand out. The glass flowers at the Bellagio were absolutely amazing.

We walked around the strip for an hour or two – I’m not actually sure how long. At one point, we were out in front of Caesars, and hapened to get there just as one of the fountain concerts started. That, too, was magnificent, with the music and the fountains syncrhonized, and the water shooting 50 feet into the air.

Turns out Las Vegas isn’t *all* gambling and naked girls.

But, geez, it’s very clear where the bulk of the money comes from in that city. There were hundreds of people standing on the street handing out cards and flyers for strippers and dancers. Which is apparently a euphimism for whore, as far as I can tell. With that many folks out there with those cards, even if they are only earning minimum wage, there must be just an enormous amount of money being spent on the flesh business.

What was particularly sad was the elderly women engaged in the hawking. It must be profoundly humiliating for them to have to earn their living in this business. Most of these folks appeared to be immigrants of one nationality of another, but primarily south and central americans.

Anyways, that was Thursday. Didn’t accomplish anything in particular, but I enjoyed my time with Dean and Owen. I don’t think I ever asked how old Owen is – I’m guessing about 2? Anyway, he’s pretty cute.

I don’t know if I ever mentioned anything about Wednesday night. The planners and the various folks that worked the conference went to Quark’s for dinner, at the Star Trek Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton. This was indeed an experience. One of the beverages was the “Warp Core Breach”, which was a large glass bowl, served with a chunk of dry ice in the bottom, so that it bubbled and boiled while it sat there.