I have a confession to make. OK, more than one confession. I MAY have omitted certain details from the Vegas post to save face. Hear a girl out, growing up as a millennial, I was taught to be skeptical about what I put online. These days’ young girls are posting just about everything on Tik Tok, Twitter, Instagram, and here I am scared to admit at 24 years old I become inebriated after several shots of tequila. I’m still convinced I could be a bikini photo away from losing all hirability.
Let’s re-hash the first part of the trip. Two couples and I, the fifth wheel, took a trip to Las Vegas, Nevada. The trip started off on a low note. At 3pm on the day of departure, our Airbnb host canceled our reservation. The reservation promised a small condo nestled along a row of vacation property surrounding a wide pool area. My suspicions arose two weeks prior when we were sent a designated address to a local Starbucks in the middle of the desert rather than a vacation villa.
Our flight was set to leave at 7:44pm and 4 hours later we had a hotel reserved. The night ended early as I snuggled in the scratchy sheets on top of the hotel daybed. The following day consisted of sight-seeing and craps. Walking along The Strip, my friends, Katie, Hannah, and I were bombarded by promoters. “Girls get in early, free of charge!” “Free drinks for women!” “Alesso will be playing, sign up with us as a VIP member and get free access!” Hannah gave each promoter her information until we had several club options lined up. Determined to go out that night, we went back to the hotel for a quick nap. The guys came back to the hotel, liquor in hand, to an unconscious party of girls.Now that we are caught up, here is a less muddled and more honest version of Girls’ Night. For Girls’ Night I decided to don my black gown with a slit down my thigh along with several slits to expose my mid to lower abdomen. An hour prior to our first stop of the night, I was furiously sewing the upper part of the dress. I clearly was not meant to be wearing a Fashionnova dress, I lacked the surgery and fillers to obtain the “image” the company was clearly going for. Katie matched me in a long white gown, with a plunging neckline and Hannah in a modestly short white day dress that did little to hide her hourglass figure.
A fifteen minute Uber ride later and we arrived to see the Chippendales. No, not the ones from Mickey Mouse’s entourage, the male dancers. Not the male dancing chipmunk trio, either. The male strippers. Very confusing and a huge distinction to be made early on. Drink in hand, I gasped as the curtains opened.
A row of conventionally attractive, toned men stood fully clothed. The moment the music started, their shirts were barely hanging by threads until they were thrown into the cheering crowd. “Hannah, grab the shirt!” I heard Katie yell as their pants were discarded. Each song was accompanied with a choreographed dance and your stereotypical niche setting. Shirtless man riding a stationary motorcycle, check. Naked in a shower, check. Oh and we can’t forget police men mooning the audience. In between sets, male dancers would run down the aisle and press their bodies up against the cheering crowd. An older lady, in her 60’s, had a male dancer repeatedly, for lack of a better word, hump her laughing face before heading off back stage. For self-preservation, I definitely did not enthusiastically cheer on the men as they ran down the aisle and had them rub their abs on my hands. Twice.
Towards the end of the show, I screamed to get the dancers to take Katie on stage. Katie was soon whisked away as the dancers handcuffed her and sat her down dead center of the stage. They slowly grinded in a circle before the finale ended in a flash. Sorry, I meant with a flash as the lead dancer turned away from the crowd to face Katie and ripped off his underwear.
Don’t get me wrong, in my original post I did play up the naïve and shy narrative, I thought watching Magic Mike with my mom one night would have prepared me. The first half hour I spent the show clinging to my seat, scooting away from the aisle. Two mix drinks in and I was in the gift shop with my friends, giggling over an American flag underwear I decided to purchase.Next stop was the Wynn. A luxury casino and hotel where Alesso would DJ for the night in the outside pool and garden. In the waiting line, Katie, Hannah and I got to talking to a group of guys from South Africa. Thinking back, I didn’t quite understand what their job was, a theme that will persist on the rest of the night. “So do you guys know of Die Antwoord since you’re from South Africa?” I asked trying to find a common ground for conversation. The main guy we had been talking to laughed and responded, “Ahh so you must be the trouble maker of the group.” Ehhh… sure. I’d rather not explain that it’s my dad’s eclectic taste in music that has guys thinking I’m interesting or “not like the other girls”.
“We watch most of the same movies Americans do,” the main guy, who I will now call Blondie, continued.
“If you’re from Africa, why are you white?” Hannah laughed.
Oh my god, Hannah, no. The group of guys exchanged confused glances. Oh no. Katie stepped into the rescue.
“Oh my god, Hannah, you can’t just ask people why they’re white.”
I held my breath. Silence. “It’s from Mean Girls, haven’t you seen that movie?”
If there was ever a time in your life you were hoping to use that quote, just don’t.
Once inside I was overwhelmed. An island sat next to the pool surrounded by columns and pool floats. On the small island was a bar and several gambling tables. I ordered a drink in hopes to spur more conversation. As mentioned in the original post, the drinks were TWENTY FREAKING DOLLARS. I couldn’t even smuggle in a drink in my hand sanitizer bottle or in a tampon package if I wanted, thanks to the security.
My attention span towards the group of guys from South Africa was shortening as they asked about our home state. “What is Ohio even known for?”
“No, Terra, don’t say that. People will think we’re boring. Say football!” Katie exclaimed, rolling her eyes.
“We have good financial companies,” Hannah responded.
Hannah’s response was more intelligent than that, I’m just too stupid to comprehend financial lingo.
“Oh, and human trafficking!” I joined back in only to get a disheartened head shake from Katie.
As conversation shifted, I met one of their friends, Tom. Tom was… definitely Asian and most likely blonde. Ah, there goes my memory. If you’re imagining G Dragon with that description, you are mistaken. Think South Asian and blonde. I think. My memory grows fuzzy this point forward.
Tom was traveling for work as an… oh let’s face it, I don’t know if anyone was ever honest about their occupation. He took a special interest in me as we talked to each other for quite a while.
What I do remember is Tom mentioning a giant bear statue in the hotel and I was dead set on our task to find it. Looking back, this was most likely a ploy to get me alone from the rest of the group. However, in my inebriated state, I was determined to find this bear statue and we walked the halls of the Wynn giggling from the excess alcohol. Sadly, no bear statue was to be found and we made our way back outside.
Checking my phone I see the following text:
I headed to the opposite end of the pool to see my friends surrounded by a group of Asian guys.
“This is Terra!” one of my friend’s yelled as I was greeted. “Are you Korean?” I asked only to get baffled looks in response. “No, we are all Vietnamese,” one of them answered. I shifted uncomfortably. “Are you Italian?” another asked me. Oh, thank god. We are all incapable of identifying each other.
“Here, do you want anything to drink?” I glanced over and saw the table was filled with pitchers of liquor and juice. Several girls in tiny bikinis walked by, carrying a tray full of alcohol. Oh geez. “Yeah… do you have water?”
“Katie,” I hissed, pulling her aside, “who are these people?”
“We met them in the hot tub! They are here for a bachelor party!” Katie responded. I completely forgot this sentence taking place as the remainder of the night I kept laughing and asking Katie how the heck she met these people. I blame the cheap vodka.
The party migrated its way towards the center of the pool as Alesso DJ’ed on stage. I laughed as I was tossed around from each member of the party until I made my way back to Katie. All around the pool and in the water, people were jumping up and down until gold confetti was shot into the air. The crowd cheered as we became entangled in long strands of gold. Jumping around and screaming in a pool for what felt like hours was exhausting so we made our way back to another table to sober up.
“What do you do for a living?” I asked the cutest member of the group. His friends sniggered, chiming in for him, “He sells sex for money!”
“Wait, what?” I stammered. “You’re a gigolo?”
“No…” he hesitated, “Unless that’s what you call it when you sell sex for money.”
I was flabbergasted. “Seriously? With guys?” He chuckled at my facial expression.
“I own a business with my friend,” he pointed at another member of the party. “But I am gay.” His tone lowered and I leaned in to listen, “I actually really like my business partner, but he doesn’t see me that way.”
Katie, joined our conversation at this point. “Oh my god, Katie, he is gay and is totally in love with his business partner, I have to set him up!” I gasped. I’ve read enough mangas to picture their perfect ending.
“He’s not gay, Terra. He’s just saying that to mess with you. He’s been flirting with you this whole time.”
“No, he is!” I was determined to prove this stranger’s sexuality. At no point was I sober during this entire conversation. I turned back to the not-gigolo (his new nickname) and reaffirmed, “You are gay, right?”
“Yeah, I don’t really feel much for girls.” Then he leaned in to give me a quick peck on the lips. “See? I felt nothing.” I nodded my head vigorously. See? He was totally gay.
“Don’t worry, I’ll help you out!” I reassured the not-gigolo and turned my attention towards his friend. “Hey, your friend likes you but doesn’t want to ruin your business relationship,” I blurted. Smooth, Terra. Real wing man material right there.
“No he’s not,” his friend replied. A good ten minutes we sat arguing. The not-gigolo and I were trying to convince his friend that the not-gigolo was in fact gay and should give him a chance. Our attempts were fruitless.
“I need you to do me a favor,” the not-gigolo pleaded.
“He won’t sleep with me, but if you ask him to join a threesome then he will!” What the…
“What?! Ew, no! I don’t want to do that!”
“You don’t have to do anything! All you have to do is watch!” Wow. My first time asked to join a threesome and I become the cuck. What?
“I am not doing that,” I turned to see his puppy dog eyes and felt my resolve melt.
“What’s going on?” the leader of their group chimed in.
“I was asked to join a threesome so your friends can hook up. I was asked to watch,” I rolled my eyes.
“Well, it looks like you have to do it then,” the leader of the group responded.
What is with these people?? This has to be a joke.
“OK fine,” I turned over to not-gigolo’s friend and questioned, “Do you want to have a threesome with your friend and I?” I expected laughter at such a ridiculous question.
“Yeah!” he replied excited. “I’m down!”
Thankfully the club was shutting down for the night as club security began pushing everyone out. Desperate to get away from the conversation, I rejoined Hannah and Katie. The bachelor party insisted we join them to their hotel to gamble and Hannah, the most sober of our trio, agreed.
We hoped into a car waiting outside and was whisked away to another casino. By this time it was four in the morning.“I need coffee, I feel so dead,” I whined and one of the guys bought several of us cups of coffee. I sat against a pillar and closed my eyes. The room needed to stop spinning. While I was on the precipice of purging, my friends joined the rest of the group for a game of craps. Not-gigolo’s friend, well unrequited lover at this point, sat with me making sure I was alright. A sweet sentiment, if I wasn’t collapsed next to a trash can.
Hannah and Katie rejoined us shortly.
“I just lost 200 dollars,” Katie told me. “One of the guys just gave me the money and let me play craps, I felt so bad for losing it all.”
“Guys, I don’t feel so great.” I struggled to get to my feet.
“Come join us upstairs in our room!” the leader of the group told us. Katie and I glanced at each other.
“Oh no, it’s really late, we should probably head back.”
“It won’t be long, just come up for a second,” he insisted.
“I don’t feel good!” I exclaimed and ran into the nearest restroom.
Once inside the women’s restroom, we huddled together.
“I don’t think we should go up there,” Katie whispered.
“I don’t think they’re bad people,” Hannah replied looking over her shoulder.
“Still, that’s sketchy,” I persisted. What if they were human traffickers and we end up on the news the next day for getting stupid drunk with a group of party goers we had just met.
“Terra, just act really sick so we have an excuse to leave.” Can do.
Walking back out, I tripped a little for dramatic effect. “I really don’t feel good guys, I should head back,” I told the group sheepishly. We all said our goodbyes and hugged before departing.
Katie, Hannah, and I sat outside the casino calling an Uber. Actually, Katie and Hannah were taking over the Uber situation, I was consumed by a fit of laughter as I reflected back on the weird night. The Uber driver had a difficulty reaching our hotel and we were limited on options so early in the morning. We resorted to walking down The Strip, some of us barefooted, until half an hour later we managed to get a ride.Several hours later I woke up in a hotel daybed with a splitting headache. Oh no. I sprawled out on the floor wishing for the sweet release of death. Katie locked herself in the bathroom. My stomach was churning, I had nothing in me but liquor. The nearest McDonald’s was several blocks away. I can make it, I thought as I forced myself to move.
In my desperation for food, I forgot that I was in the middle of a desert in June. The sun was high in the sky and not 10 minutes into the walk, I realized I might die out there. My destination was far as I saw waves of heat distorting the McDonald’s sign. I ran into Hannah and her boyfriend on their way to Subway and joined them. I can do this! Halfway through our journey a memory struck me.
“Did…did I kiss Katie?” I bent down, trying to recollect the events from the night prior.
“Yeah, you and Katie kissed. We also kissed.” Hannah replied.
A fuzzy recollection of guys cheering us on as Hannah and I pecked each other on the lips. Did I drink that much??
By the time we reached our destination, I was gone. I sat in the bathroom. I was dehydrated with a mind splitting headache and more than anything wanted to force everything inside of me to be outside. I felt tears as I realized I was trapped in the desert and there would be no way I can make it back to the hotel at this point.
On my quest to find food, I forgot to bring my pass to take the monorail and had walked the whole way. Hannah’s boyfriend gave me his pass to take the monorail with Hannah to lessen the walking distance. I trudged along with Hannah to the station as her boyfriend walked back to the hotel.
I glanced at Hannah chewing ice and asked for some. Ah, the thought of water trickling down my throat as the sun beat down my back. Several chips of ice and my will to live was re-surged! The rest of the way back to the hotel, Hannah fed me ice every so often. Like you would a horse. In the mirage of the desert, she was a goddess. I felt my muscles work again, the pain in my stomach settling. Once safely inside our hotel room, I ran into the bathroom to defile the sink.
The rest of the day, I was in a zombie-like state, eating ice chips from a cup. My phone went off and I saw Tom had texted me. How did he get my number? A couple of texts back and forth as Tom requested to see me one last time. My mental state was shot as my main focus was to eat ice while the rest of the group explored different hotels before the plane departed.
The girls and I discussed our night out.
“What do you think those guys did? The bachelor party? They seemed rich.”
“They kept coordinating different stories,” Hannah said thoughtfully. “They all seemed really sweet though,” she continued. “Some of the guys approached us at the hot tub while you were in the hotel. They said we were the most conservatively dressed and they knew I had a boyfriend and that Katie was married.”
Huh… that’s an interesting turn of events.
The plane ride home we all fell asleep after hours walking in the sun. I didn’t remember much about my conversation with the mysterious Tom I met until an Instagram follow request popped up on my feed about a year later.
Wow, I might as well have given him my social security number at that point. I didn’t realize a brief interaction with a stranger would leave me to telling my whole life story. As for the South African guys we first encountered? Hannah recollected their YouTube channel name. Two of the members, including Blondie, liked to make videos on dating advice and how to get women. As for the bachelor party? Still an enigma, but a great bunch of guys to go partying with.