For me, it started two years, when I went to the third Bloggers in Sin City. It was a scary thing, to go. I’d been following, admiring and internet stalking so many of the attendees for years and years and it seemed a bit presumptuous that I should find myself worthy enough to bask in the glow of their awesomeness, but I went anyway, determined to put myself out into the world. It took not a small amount of self-talk to get myself ready for Vegas, but then I got there and found a herd of people that were, without a doubt, my people.
It was incredible, really, how amazing it felt to be totally and completely accepted as me; the real, weird, sorta crazy me, but that’s exactly what happened. I’d found my people.
Around registration time this year, back in January, it was announced that this year’s Bloggers in Sin City would be the last. The announcement made me feel a lot of feelings, but it also made me determined that this event, this final romp through Vegas with 60-something of my best friends, was going to be the best yet.
And it was.
Wednesday was all yell hugs and feeling like I’d just come home after being away for far too long. It was wine and late night pizza and heart swells. It was a like a family reunion, only better and with more glitter.
Thursday was brunch at Hash House A Go Go, giant sprigs of rosemary, steak knives through breakfast foods, honeydew and BLT bloody mary’s. It was going to the registration lounge for more hugs and hellos, cheesecake pops, popchips, plank wars, and invoking tigers, sharks and moose. It was meeting and making new friends, a rousing game of Cards Against Humanity and getting all the goodies. It was the welcome mixer at Serendipty 3, sweet and savory treats, pineapple mojitos, hamburgers without bottom buns, meatballs, staring contests, name tags and sequins. It was an impromptu party in the room I shared with Caryn at the Flamingo, complete with wine, whiskey, glowsticks, bow-tie lessons and some overnight guests.
It was waking up Friday ready for the pool. It was shared breakfast sandwiches, reserved space, glitter homelessness, nachos, a booty shaking contest and shameless poolside dancing. It was an afternoon nap, then dinner at Planet Hollywood’s Spice Market Buffet. It was lingering over dinner, hair braiding, discussions on god and religion and a massive plate of cupcakes. It was seeing “O” at the Bellagio, marveling at the mechanics, fake fights and soul-eating threats.
Saturday was blogger run club, learning the Las Vegas elevation and a 3 mile jaunt down and around the strip. It was brunch and an absolutely exceptional whiskey tasting, all the inside jokes, more nachos, talking about Army, and dinner at Le Village Buffet at Paris. It was getting ready with my neighbors, glitter hairspray, curling irons, some mild blogger gossip and my blue suede shoes. It was seeing everyone all dressed up for happy hour, vodka tonics, making ridiculous faces, laughing so hard it hurt and a few little tears. It was the Wicked White Party, at PURE, reserved space and bottle service. It was getting lost on the way out and dancing just to dance, wandering aimlessly around Ceasar’s, finally finding our way out and late night snack time. It was late night chats and a roommate who snores like a Disney princess.
And then it was Sunday, the worst day, the dumbest day. I hate on Sunday each year of Bloggers in Sin City because saying goodbye to everyone is the absolute worst, and it always comes too soon. Nicole, who made this whole incredible thing possible, got up to speak and opened up the floor to anyone else wanting to share their feelings publicly and so I cried, all through brunch. And not dainty tears – no – I ugly cried. I ugly cried because it’s hard to say goodbye and Sunday was an awful parade of goodbyes.
So I ugly cried at brunch.
I ugly cried at In-N-Out.
I ugly cried at Margaritaville.
I ugly cried in the lobby of the Flamingo.
By the time I got to the airport I was out of tears.
I stopped being sad once I got home because crying over the amazing people who are in my life seems like an awful waste of tears. It’s sad that it won’t be like that again, that we won’t ever all get sequined up for nights out in Vegas, but this isn’t the real end. These people are my people and I’m not done with them.
Now I’m left trying to sort through all the feelings I have and mostly I just feel lucky. And happy. It sucks that it’s over, but really, I’m pretty much over Vegas. I went for the people, for the amazing and brilliant group of individuals that the event seems to attract each year.
This isn’t the end.