During my six-month holiday in America, I visited the gambling mecca of the Western USA – Las Vegas. While the city does have a seedy underbelly – with rows of pawn shops, run-down buildings and homeless people – the Las Vegas we always see in the movies and on TV is every bit as glitzy and glamourous as you imagine it to be.
The Las Vegas Strip (which is actually located outside of the city limits) is a 4km-long, neon-lit stretch of hotels, casinos and resorts. Of course, as tourist in Las Vegas, you simply have to go gambling on The Strip.
I was on a limited budget but was having great fun playing the 25-cent (quarter) slot machines. I had literally put my last quarter into the last slot machine, and my bus was leaving any minute. Suddenly bells started flashing, whistles began whistling and worth of quarters began pouring out of the slot machine. I grabbed a paper cup and began stuffing the money into it, before racing off to catch my bus. It may only have been but I felt like a millionaire! I had won money on the slot machines in Vegas! The amount is irrelevant – it was the experience that was priceless.
The life lesson learned here is that while money grows your bank balance, experience grows your soul. If we learn to place the same value on experiences as we do on money, we will be truly rich.