I couldn't leave Las Vegas without addressing an issue that has always nagged away at me, i.e. the question of self-image. This is without doubt an astonishingly shallow place and there is no pretense that it might be any other way. So, in a world of glamour and excitement, how do I see myself?
I've never really had a terribly high sense of self-image, even when I was slim and had all of my hair (and yes, both of those things were once true...). And I admit that one side effect of this trip is that I really must do something about the former when I get home (the latter, alas, is beyond redemption). However, I generally have the decency not to flaunt my lack of conditioning. Yet I find myself surrounded by people who are grossly overweight, or amazingly inappropriately dressed or, in some particularly frightening cases, both.
On the other hand, the young lady wearing a bikini top, and a rather small one at that, whom I encountered whilst drinking coffee in Luxor (the casino) looked like something out of a Beach Boys video or Baywatch. People like that, whilst very attractive to look at, make me want to hide.
Unfortunately for Americans, the population is tending towards more of the former group rather than the latter. Lest the rest of the world mock though, don't forget that the British and, more surprisingly perhaps, Australians, are racing towards mass obesity as quickly, if not more so. At least Americans and Australians actively celebrate the cult of beauty, because we British don't. Perhaps it's the climate, perhaps the sense of suspicion amongst British men in particular of anything with connotations of 'making an effort'.
Well, I've decided that it's high time that I exited the fat race, so I'm going to try and make some changes to my lifestyle. Wish me well in the months to come, I'm going to need all of the help I can get...