As I was roaming through the streets of my little town today, something caught my attention.  There is quite a number of “Herna”  (casino) in some strategic spots around the city.  Because Czechs do love the outdoors, this is a sighting that I rather find quite unlikely.

When I think of casinos, I think of Las Vegas.  Back in California, whenever somebody wants to splurge, celebrate or relax, it is the place to go.  Aside from gambling, there are a lot of concerts and shows that are being run in various hotels.  Not to mention that top-of-the-line spas are also one of its biggest attractions.  Needless to say, Vegas meant partying or relaxing.

The Las Vegas Strip

But Vegas is not all about gambling or going wild.  There are also a lot of  things to do in Vegas outside the comfort of one’s hotel.  One can visit Lake Mead and Hoover Dam, listed as one of the seven wonders of the industrial world.  And for golf enthusiasts, there is also the option of visiting Boulder City, the only place in Nevada that is so unlike Vegas.

The Lake Mead viewed from the Hoover Dam.

But perhaps one of my favorite  and memorable activities on this side of the country was a trip to the Grand Canyon, right around Nevada’s neighboring state of Arizona.  Although it is a few hours drive from Vegas, it is  not that far away.  The canyon’s unparalleled beauty was a great photography subject.

Sunset at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon

The short hikes to the viewing spots also provided a very good exercise for my feet and lungs.

Now that we are here in Czech, all I can do is reminisce those good old days.  That’s why after seeing those casinos around town, I cannot help remembering those days when I was young and free and Vegas was just a few hours away.