viva clark county – part two

Continued from Part One.

I have lived with humidity for most of my adult life in Australia, and that experience for me has been like living with a persistent cold that I just can’t seem to shake. I constantly sweat in sub-tropical conditions. This was one of the main reasons that I moved south to Melbourne, so as to get away from the dampness of the more northern climates during summer.

Worst was my experience of living in Hong Kong during summer. There the humidity reaches percentages in the high eighties and low nineties, where you feel it could bucket down sheets of water in the sticky hot summer sun.

As the sun beats down on Las Vegas you can’t help but notice the bone dry heat of the desert. And the dryness here seems just as oppressive as the humidity in Hong Kong, taking all the water you have inside you like you are living in a Frank Herbert desert sci-fi series.

Fortunately though, this place is about pleasure. So you don’t have to go very far to find air conditional shopping malls and hotels, or outdoor spa areas that are lined with humidifiers and large fans providing a short amount of relief.

In these “spa” areas around the pools of the hotels lay the bikini clad vacationers who will only venture out of the enclosure once the sun goes down and The Strip has a chance to cool itself down. They lie there crisping their skin the shade of a bronzed southern style deep fried chicken with its secret herbs and spices. You can’t help but smell the coconut butter they use to assist in the bronzing process. It’s hard to distinguish where the sun tanning ends and the Piña Colada on the side table next to the poolside lounge chair begins.

For those slightly more adventurous, some of the more high end hotels will offer a “European” style pool or spa, which essentially means that the ladies will get their tops off and flash their nipples to the Sun God (or Ra if you are staying at The Luxor), striving to achieve that flawless tan line for the low cut gowns and blouses that will be on show later in the evening on the casino floor.

It’s strange that the images you see poolside are not unlike the images you see on the street presented to you on little “baseball” style collector’s cards. Images of busty women wrapped in the tiniest handkerchief fabric and bits of string, beckoning you into the many strip clubs and brothels hidden vicariously off The Strip. The cards are handed out to all comers by mainly latino and native American peddlers of flesh. People you can guarantee are not making a large share of the profits. But hey, in times of a world financial crisis, this jobs pays the bills just like any other. Rather than call out to advertise their Ladies Of The Night, the cards are handed out with a clicking motion from the fingers, the cards chirping to you like crickets calling for a mate in the dusk.

The streets become littered with these cards, the vacationers, sports team getaways and the men’s bucks party weekenders have all tossed them aside. These sexy young things now have their visages trampled into the pavement. The cards may have lost their way, but the metaphor certainly has not.

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