Unfortunately I currently have to work at a job. No, not independently wealthy yet, I still depend on those paychecks to get by. My last employer was the Sands Convention Center, where I provided computer programming services for running the place, and created web sites as required. The Sands Convention Center is attached to the Venetian/Palazzo hotels (sorry, resorts). As visitors coming to Las Vegas declined along with the economy all of the big Las Vegas resorts had massive layoffs. The Sands was unaffected by several over at the Venetian, but eventually we were included in a round that covered about 2,000 people. The Venetian laid off 2,000, the Sands only 20, but proportionately it was a larger percentage of the Sands workforce. It doesn’t take too many permanent people to run a convention center, we brought in temporary workers to help put on the shows, the full time staff just maintained the place and organized renting the place.
I was out of work for a while, and eventually hired by a company located way out at the edge of Henderson, one of the cities that comprise the greater Las Vegas area. Our building is out at the far north eastern edge of the Vegas valley, with no other building within a mile of us. The building is split into areas, and filled with cubicles. Upstairs we have low walls, but downstairs the cubes are smaller and taller, providing isolation for the sales staff talking on their phones.
I’ve got a cube near the outside wall, with a window right behind me., with a view of the open desert and the mountains.
As a result of our location we have a lot of animal visitors to our small spot of grass out front. There is a group of seven or eight rabbits that are out every morning eating the grass. Yesterday one of them was a little different; it seems like he had a little run in with a coyote, as his left ear has a nice bite taken out of the very tip. Just had my cell phone when he was close to the window, so you have to look closely to make out the missing tip.
Besides the rabbits there are lots of little chipmunks skittering around. They are to small and fast and don’t stop to pose for me to get a good photograph. A family of a dozen or so quail also come by. Yesterday a road runner made his appearance, out on the grass with the bunnies.
But the warm summer also brings out some other desert citizens. Last week a rattlesnake was found in the shade of the building. Our office manager is a little snake paranoid, so we have several snake bite kits scattered around, along with a special snake stick to pick them up with – it’s about two meters long with a grasping hook at the end. The stick was used to move this guy (no photos of that, sorry) and it ended up being a young snake, about a meter long with only three or four rattle segments.
Still big enough to cause some pain if he bit anyone.