Tahoe is a good example of a ‘weird thing’, created by the presence of State lines. It sits on the border between Nevada and California. Driving here last night it was easy to work out where the State line was, even though there were only small signs on the road. On the California side was a long road, lined with motels, hotels and fast food restaurants – and all of the other urban detritus that goes with that – like laundromats, wedding chapels and liquor stores. And it was all low-rise – nothing higher than two floors. And there, on the state line – literally one foot over it – were huge tower blocks of casinos. And nothing else – we drove for a mile into Nevada, and once you were past the casinos, there was nothing else but blackness.
My picture doesn’t really capture it, but I tried. Its amazing – it’s just like somebody turned the lights out! So Californians drive up here from Sacramento and San Francisco to spend the weekend in motels on the California side of the line, and then shuttle bus or walk over to the casinos in Nevada, to spend their real money. I met a guy at breakfast who’d arrived at 10pm, and had lost $3,000 in the casino by 2am – and this isn’t a guy with money, otherwise he wouldn’t be staying in a $50 a night motel! But he wasn’t worried – he’s going back tonight to win it all back!