Happy Saturday/Sunday everyone, from wherever you're reading this weeks post!

This week I wanted to chat a bit more about my incredible time in the USA, but with a bit more of a serious side.

As a lot of you know, there was a slight dampener put on a few days of my west coast adventure, being the horrendous night of the 1st of October in Las Vegas. Exactly one day before we arrived.

Before I go into all of this, I just wanted to take a second to give a shout out and to remember all of the victims of this horrific incident. To the beautiful people that lost their lives, to their family members and to the survivors who's minds I'm sure will be haunted with that night for years to come. To the man that I met in the tattoo parlour, there that night and getting a memorial done. To everyone who donated blood and to all of the loved ones overseas, filled with panic over their family and friends in Vegas that night.

I can't even begin to describe the feeling of that morning. Luckily enough, my Contiki group was spending that night in Williams, after an amazing day of exploring the Grand Canyon. We had all had a relatively quiet night in anticipation for the two days that we were about to spend in Sin City, so most of us were asleep when it happened.
Half of us being woken up by the variety of concerned messages and phone calls from all of our loved ones back home, half of us not realising the horror that had gone on until they woke up the next morning, ready to go.

There was a definite change in vibe in the hotel that morning as we all sat in shock and horror watching the news over breakfast, with hushed whispers about the tragedy of it all.

And that was before we even arrived in Vegas....

Now, I still to this day am not sure exactly how I feel about what I did see when we arrived in Sin City.
The lower half of the Vegas strip, where the incident had occurred was closed, as we expected. The large screens at the front of most casinos had help line numbers or pleads for blood donations all over them.

However, that was not what has stuck with me the most. The thing that has stuck with me is that the city, to a lesser extent I'm sure, was still buzzing. The casinos were still full, there were still people walking around drinking on the street at 2 in the afternoon, the lights were still blinding and to anyone that didn't know, it was what you would imagine as a regular Monday in Las Vegas.

Part of me loves this. At the end of the day, if the entire city went into mourning and completely shut down, then they win... But at the same time, it was a very uncomfortable experience, the fun we had, shrouded in a mist of mourning, of almost guilt, but at the same time feeling as though we were doing it for the victims.
Because at the end of the day, these events prove one thing. That you need to just live. Live as much as you can, while you can, because you just never know...

There is really no knowing when something like this will happen, one thing that I definitely realised having this event happen so close to home. But you just can't let that stop you, because yes, these people were out at a music festival, but this could just as easily happen to you at work, at home or just walking down the street. So why not make the most of the time you have and just, live.


Instagram: http://instagram.com/taylorbekkers
Photo Credit: The wonderful David Clues


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