That time I did impromptu standup in Asheville

I never intended to perform at the comedy night. A few hours earlier, I’d been lying in bed, feeling tired and headachey and slightly sorry for myself.

But the night was free and right around the corner; I thought I’d go and see how different American comedy was.

After about four acts had been on, I started thinking that maybe I could do it. That maybe there would never be a better time to try it; I didn’t know anyone there, and I was leaving in the morning.

I bought a glass of wine to stop the shaking and jotted a few notes down.

Then, all of a sudden, I was being introduced as a comic and welcomed to the stage. I talked about some mildly funny things that had happened on my trip to the states.  I remember being proud that my voice sounded normal. I filled my time, people laughed. There was some clapping.

Stand up comedy is one of those things I always wanted to do, but thought I would always be too scared to. I was scared, but I tried not to think about it.

Straight after my set (get me, I have sets now), a kindly woman from Jersey bought me a drink. I’m not sure if it was out of pity,  or if she just fancied me, but I was glad of the support regardless.

I don’t think I was terrible. For something thought up on the spot, I think I did alright.

Afterwards, I felt so alive,  my cheeks still pink from the embarrassment of talking in front of a (dwindling) crowd. It’s the same feeling that dragged me up all the way to Macchu Pichu, that saw me mountain bike down The Most Dangerous Road in the World. I wasn’t necessarily well equipped for any of these things, but I did them anyway, because I assumed that I could.

What happened in Vegas…

…ends up on this blog! Haha. I went to Sin City with pretty low expectations; I’m fairly risk – averse and the thought of getting wasted alone really didn’t appeal.

So I went for the weirdness, as part of a collection of strange and crazy pieces of American life, and weirdness is certainly what I got.

Vegas has an effiel tower. It also has a sphynx, a castle and a statue of liberty. Bright, flashing lights, fake sky ceilings and a maze of slot machines made visiting this city incredibly interesting.

The decadence is surreal, and the contrasts of such excess in the middle of the Nevada desert is really a sight to behold.

I won $2.50 in Caesar’s Palace, saw aquariums and moving statues, a whole four – floor shop dedicated to M&Ms, and a comedy show at the Riviera. I got lost in downtown Las Vegas and only managed to find my way back to the right road by the help of a towering ‘STRIPPERS’ sign.

I tried to find the Welcome to Vegas sign on foot, but gave up when I appeared to be walking into the desert with only half a bottle of water and a notebook for company.

But mostly I enjoyed the wonderful opportunity for people watching. Elderly couples who must have been coming for years, British tourists burnt pink by the unrelenting sun. And locals with crazy eyes and loud voices.