We are parked in our usual spot in Las Vegas, behind Paris, or, more accurately right now, behind Planet Hollywood (map). We arrived after dark last night, and most of the spots further north, behind Paris and Bally's, were already taken, although they are empty now as I type.
After we left the Arroyo Crossing shopping center Sunday, we headed to the Walmart on Fort Apache, a bit northwest. The Petsmart/Banfield there is right next door. When I had scoped it all out on Google Earth, I noticed a dirt parking strip across the dead end road south of the store, where some trucks were parked, and when we arrived this looked to be a nicer option that the store lot itself, so that's where we parked (map).
It turned out that even though the road is a dead end, people do cut through the gravel to get to the frontage road just to the east, but only a small handful of cars did that while we were there. In addition to the trucks, we saw another two rigs over the time we were there. It was very quiet, and darker than the store lot would have been. In fact, it was pleasant enough that we would have spent another couple nights there.
Late Sunday afternoon, however, I received an alert from the National Weather Service informing us that there would be a high wind watch today, starting in the morning hours and running into the wee hours tomorrow. Winds are forecast to be 30-40mph gusting to 60-70mph. We decided we'd be better off here near the strip, in the relative protection of tall buildings on three sides. Still, it's been gusty here on the street, and I even had to call Gregory Popovich, a performer at the Planet Hollywood, to let him know that his advertising trailer was in danger of blowing over. This item consisted of a large sign attached to a flimsy trailer, and was chained to a fence just south of us, so my call was partly self-serving as we did not want it to hit us.
After picking up our prescription cat food, dropping off some used motor oil, and grabbing another few items from Walmart yesterday, we rolled over to Massage Nirvana just a mile north, where I nabbed a much-needed therapeutic massage at the introductory $49 price, while Louise took advantage of their services to get a microdermabrasion treatment. We booked those at the end of the day to take maximum advantage of our quiet parking spot, which is what put us here on the strip in the dark.
The wind started up right on schedule this morning, on an otherwise sunny and pleasant day. I noticed the Popovich trailer tilting up on one wheel as I was walking the dog. Even poor Opal, who is now just a little slip of a thing, had trouble remaining upright in the strong gusts.
That was nothing compared to now, though, and it's supposed to get worse before it gets better, with the strongest gusts this evening. In the meantime, I have my eyes peeled for large chunks of debris rocketing down the street, and we've had the police scanner on in the background to see if any trouble is headed our way. We're staying put in the bus, although we may brave the elements briefly for a half block later to go to dinner.
Now that we're well-parked here, I expect we'll just stay in this spot for another few nights. Depending on how things go with Ben and Karen and their generator, we may end up moving back over to either the Orleans or Arizona Charlies before heading west out of town on our way to Death Valley.