So much for 'retirement'
Well, I’m back again, doing what I love: writing about all things Las Vegas. Missed it and missed sharing it with you. In late July, I resigned at the Review-Journal after nearly 17 years, following more than a month of medical leave.
I had a great semi-retirement. There was a ton of travel, my third love behind my wife, Cara, and our pups, Rumor and Scandal.
We went to places I longed to see like Charleston, S.C., Savannah, Ga. I took Cara to Mt. Charleston for the first time and photographed a colt from a wild horse herd. There was a long-delayed honeymoon in San Francisco, with a couple Giants-Cubs post-season games tacked on.
Then Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon in the same breath-taking weekend in November. Just having weekends free for the first time in 40-some years was heavenly.
So was being pain free after a 14-year daily struggle, the fallout from complications from prostate cancer. Loving what you do and not having pain are two powerful forces.
As much as I enjoyed the freedom from deadlines, I missed the best job I ever had: covering Las Vegas Boulevard from one end to the other. I couldn’t break the half-century habit of discovering a story. I did an occasional feature on my Facebook page about a fascinating person I would meet. I still take great joy in interviewing people with extraordinary stories on “Conversations with Norm” at the Smith Center.
This has been my longest break from journalism since 1972, when I took off six months, most of it traversing Europe by train.
After living on $5 to $10 a day for months in Europe, I came back hungry to restart my career. Through some lucky breaks, I landed a job with The Associated Press in Cincinnati at the height of the Big Red Machine era.
That was the beginning of a grand adventure punctuated by covering Olympics in Sarajevo, Los Angeles, Calgary and Atlanta. There was a World Series fractured by a major earthquake, baseball’s arrival in Denver and John Elway’s Super Bowl super teams.
I didn’t want to end. Still don’t.
Keep returning to this site and you’ll see a hybrid of the Vegas Confidential column I wrote for 17 years at the R-J plus the sports and man-about-town columns I did at the Rocky Mountain News in Denver.
With the NHL on the way and the Oakland Raiders looking to relocate here, the Entertainment Capital of the World appears to be on the brink of entering a professional sports era. There will be many angles to cover.
It’s a great time to be covering the Las Vegas scene and I’m elated to be back.