This is a report on our Christmas 2005 trip to Show Low Arizona to visit Marshall and Mabry, Deb's dad and his long time friend.

We flew from to San Jose to Las Vegas to meet Deb's sister Peg and our daughter Amber, both from Wood Village, Oregon. We rented an SUV for the drive to Show Low. We stayed overnight in Las Vegas at the Aladdin hotel. Unfortunately, Deb thought were staying at the Hilton so we drove down the entire strip at rush hour and then found our reservation was for another night. Whoops. Our rooms at the Aladdin were the nicest rooms we ever had, the bathrooms were spectacular. This night Amber, Deb and I left Peggy playing the penny slots and we walked out into the city. We ate at the "Harley Davidson Cafe". Here is a good picture of Deb eating. We then went to a place with $3 craps tables. Deb played for about an hour and came out $10 or more ahead. We then walked over to the Bellagio. Spectacular and we didn't see hardly any of the place. Deb decided to play the $10 craps tables here and won $20 or so. Then we went back to the Aladdin and to bed.

The next morning before we left we went to cash our $25 coupon at the craps table. To do this we needed to put down a matching $25. I said no but Deb dug into her pocked and cashed $30 for chips. She put down the $25 and up came a 10, she put the other $5 on "hard 10". A soft 10 came up and we walked away $50 richer! (minus the $5). We had no time left, we had to get started on our three hour trip to Show Low.

Deb insisted it would take three hours to Show Low. It was closer to eight hours then three hours. We spent quite a long time getting past the Hoover Dam. It was quite impressive. They are building a big suspension bridge over the gorge to move traffic faster, plus probably so no terrorist can blow the dam with a truck load of explosives.

Finally after a long long drive we dropped Amber and Peggy off at their hotel. Deb and I went on to Marshall's. It was farily late.

Peg was also meeting an old friend from high school - Bruce.

Next day, Saturday, we loaded up the gang minus Mabry and drove to the petrified forest. We had a great time looking at the petrified wood and various formations. Most places were closed for Christmas eve but we found a nice lunch place in Holbrook called "El Rancho". We drove home then had a good time drinking and talking that evening. We watched "Polar Express", very appropriate and enjoyed by all.

Christmas day we went to the local indian casino, Hon-dah for a BIG buffet lunch. We ate until we dropped over. We played slots for  a while and then went home. Another night of drinks, talk and watching "Analyze That" then later "Cinderella" starring Brandy.  A very good day.

The next day we took a tour to look at the destruction from the big fire a few years ago. Very interesting. Looks like a lot of rebuilding going on. We stopped for lunch at a small place. Back home we we took a nap then Amber, Deb and I went to a cute little bar nearby called "The Little Bit". Then back to Marshall's place on once again had a couple drinks and watched "Shall We Dance". What a terrific movie! Then to bed.

Tuesday we drove back to Las Vegas. This time we took a route that bypassed the dam and went through Laughlin- smart move and a different view of things.

I dropped Peg, Deb and Amber at the Hilton and had a big adventure returning the car to Alamo and taking a shuttle back. Not fun, it took about two hours - and painful. I found the gang, or rather Deb found me wandering around the lobby. They were having Mexican food and Margaritas. I joined in. After three pounds of food and enough liquid to float a battleship. I was not feeling too well. Amber, Deb and I decided to tour the strip and leave Peggy at the penny slots.

We walked to the strip and took a packed(!) city bus. It was a  zoo.  Amber became the bus stair monitor. We got off, walked all around the Venetian shops and casino. I won $3 on the penny slots. We walked and walked to the Paris casino. We didn't spend much time there. We took the monorail (a shot from our room) back to the Hilton.

Deb took her $10 coupon and $20 and began playing craps. There was one guy who threw the dice for about 40 minutes. Everyone was making money. Deb got about $100 ahead. Good thing I was squirreling chips away because later she nearly lost her entire pile. She came out $20+ ahead. It was late so we went to bed.

The trip was a real adventure. We really enjoyed seeing Marshall and Mabry as well as Mabry's son Jeff. Quite a guy. He spent several months in France doing private construction. He had interesting comments and stories. Can't wait to go back again.