Travel day, Friday May 3
Once again I was over excited from the whole trip to Vegas, that I decided to watch some episodes that were laying around. And just when I decided that I really needed a powernap of an hour or so, Jørg Krause (@fopieNo) decided to send me messages on Facebook so I only got about 10 minutes of sleep or so. I had breakfast around 4AM and at 5:30 I drove off to pick up Jon (@JonKlaus) and Menno (@MennodeLiege) and we drove to Düsseldorf Airport in Germany. Parking at that early hour was easy and after going through customs we waited for the take off so I could finally catch up on some sleep.
At 9:45AM the 767 left for Chicago, an airport I’ve never been before, so I was a little curious about that. Jon and Menno were sitting a few rows behind me and we had 2 window seats. I just love to be able to watch outside while sleeping. Snacks and lunch were just fine and right on schedule we landed in Chicago at around 12PM, where we had to go through customs, which, as you probably know, is a long and slow process since 9/11. But that’s a good thing and we planned for a 3 hour layover to accommodate that, so no worries there. But the rain predicted nothing good and guess what? We ended up with an extra 3 hours of delay! So instead of at 3:25PM we took off at 6:20PM! I don’t remember much about that flight since I even missed taking off. Catching up on some serious sleep!!
Las Vegas, here we are!
After flying for yet another 4 hours, there she was: Sin City: what a lovely sight, seeing the Strip once again! Getting our suitcases and bags was a piece of cake and we shared a cab with Jørg, who arrived slightly before us, to our hotel: The Venetian! The room I got was fantastic once again, but having a bed to sleep and a closet to hang my clothes were the most important things to start with. 3 TV’s and that view!!!
After traveling for 24 hours we were glad to finally arrive in our rooms, which were simply fantastic! But we needed to relax a bit as well and despite the 3 lunches or so that we had, we were starting to feel that local stomach earthquake again. So Sean Thulin, Mark Browne, Ingo Zitzmann, Jorg Krause, Jon and I decided to have a snack in some restaurant downstairs in the casino.
Afterwards we decided a short stop at Gilley’s across the street was a good idea and we ran into Matthew Brender as well! Great to see the man behind EMC Elect once again!!
On Saturday morning Jon, Menno and I walked to Caesar’s palace for some serious breakfast and we ended up at Max Brenner’s, specialized in chocolate. There’s chocolate with everything: as a side with everything they serve: breakfast as you can see in the picture, or just as a drink as you can see in the coco bean-shaped cup at Jon’s side of the table.
And while waiting for Allen Ward to arrive we relaxed a bit while enjoying the food. I visited the Apple Store for Elisa and at around 1PM we gathered at the Venetian for a trip to the famous Vegas sign.
Las Vegas sign
When Allen arrived it took us two cabs to get to the famous Las Vegas sign and we walked back towards the Venetian. It was “Vegas hot”, so we went through Mandalay bay for a drink and mostly through other casinos while making our way back “home”. I liked the walk, but I’m not doing that again, unless somebody asks me very nicely. You have to do it once to understand the size and distance of it all, but out there in that kind of heat…. no more!
At 6PM Sue Rich joined us and we had dinner at the Palazzo, next to the Strip across the Treasure Island pirates show. Steak is just my favorite food 🙂
Afterwards we ended our evening at Gilley’s again, searching for Sergey, who should have arrived by now as well. But being up that long and walking in the heat just was too much and we were so tired that we decided to head back to the hotel even before midnight.
Sunday May 5
For me the day started with an extensive meeting with my EMC eServices Customer Council “colleagues” in a nice place within the Venetian hotel called the Pinot Brasserie. It was great to actually see each other once again . Also our three new members Julien Fontaine (@julien_fontain), Henri Hämäläinen (@henriwithani) and Roy Mikes (@teovmy) were introduced to the rest of the group. We discussed the present and future of eServices.
That day the check in for EMC World itself took place: getting our bag, badges, shirt and lots of information.
Dutch Delegation – Stratosphere Tower
Just like last year the so called Dutch Delegation had a nice trip to the Stratosphere Tower as an opening party. And that view! Woowwww, fantastic! After sunset it became even more impressive. We had some snacks and drinks, but not that many people were eager to go on top of the tower to use one of the thrill rides. We were up on the 105th floor or something, so keeping safe is only human!