Vegas…beyond the Strip (Part 1)

What do you think about when I say Vegas?  Glitz, glamour and gambling?  That’s the more publized side of Las Vegas for sure.

Did you know that there are a few National parks and State parks within hours of Vegas?

  • Red Rock Canyon
  • Great Basin
  • Valley of Fire 
  • Death Valley
  • Zion
  • Bryce

We managed to visit two of these locations last week – Valley of Fire and Death Valley.

Valley of Fire State Park is just an hour away from Vegas by car.

Here are just a few highlights of the beauty within the park…

Scene from a natural “cubby”


Petroglyph (rock carving) over 3000 years old!

 “Beehive” shaped red rock with little windows and “cubbies”

  Slot Canyon


Yucca Plant on a trail


Arch Rock


Balancing Rock    

Massive  red rock!

Which way did the river flow?

Climbing fun!


Chilling in a cubby! 😀


We originally thought we would be in and out in two hours but we spent five hours there!  What a fun way to spend time with  the family!

So the next time you are in Vegas, check it out!


Stay tuned for photos from Death Valley…it was out of this world!!



The News…spicy and saucy!

What do you look for in a News channel?

  • Truth in reporting?
  • Unbiased views?
  • Well rounded coverage i.e. National vs. International?
  • News-worthy events?

If you have found a news source with any of the above traits, please leave a comment for me. 😀

I am really  disapponted in all the cable news channels in the USA.  

I have been trying to see if any of them would cover the Chennai Floods that have been happening over the last four weeks…this week being the worst!  Absolutely no coverage!

In anticipation of your questions:

  • What is Chennai?  A city, in southern India (once known as Madras) and the capital of the state of Tamilnadu.  It is one of  world’s largest cities. It has also become a major technology and manufacturing hub.

  Image courtesy of Google Maps 

  • Floods?  Yeah.  Enough to shut down their airport.  

 Image courtesy of The Hindu 

  • People are being rescued by volunteers in boats.  Supplies are also being delivered via boat.

Image courtesy of Times of India:


  • People across religions are coming together to help each other. Strangers are helping people locate their families and reporting on their safety.  It is so refreshing to see such selflessness.
  • Celebrities are rolling up their sleeves and getting involved in rescues.
  • Power lines and cell towers are affected making it hard to reach family…in some cases, even the emergency hotlines have not been functioning!
  • About 200+ have died due to these floods

Note: While I was searching for images, I noticed a dinky little article on these floods by an american cable news channel..which interesting didn’t have any coverage the night I was trying to track my inlaws…hmmm! Instead, they covered the same story over and over and over again!

This situation didn’t get any coverage even though many companies have a significant number of offshore employees in Chennai.  Not to forget the families of onshore employees of the Global Delivery Partners. They all resorted to Facebook messages…which actually were quite effective in reaching people who could track and report on their loved ones.

Anyway, I guess this news is not spicy or saucy enough.  It won’t rile you up.  It won’t make you choose Right vs. Left.  It won’t provide a segue to political agendas…which end up remaining as just that…agendas…and flashy words (ugh!)…and empty promises! It won’t keep you wondering “What happened next?!”

News these days is more about what sells i.e. Ratings.  The dress code for ladies has absolutely gone down the gutter. Geez, I miss the days when anchors sat behind an opaque desk.  I miss the days when anchors looked respectable in a suit.  I miss the days when news felt “boring” and to-the-point.  Let’s not try make politicians and their wives look cool…it’s really tacky and annoying.  They will do anything to win over their target demographic…ugh…wise up people!!

Disappointed, disappointed, disappointed!  


PS: There is an interesting Spanish movie (with subtitles) called ” The Ultimate Dictatorship” which shows an exaggerated way in which politicians use media to promote themselves.  The ending definitely gives you food for thought…should you really believe everything you see…at face value?