Booking a hotel absolutely stresses me out. Why? Because not a booking goes by without some type of problem or a “WTH did I do wrong now” moment. I did a fair amount of traveling alone for my job. Once while on a work trip, I entered the room I was given, only to catch a glance of a gentleman using the bathroom. Holy moly! I quickly slammed the door and returned to the front desk for a new room assignment. Probably scarred us both for life. I don’t spend thirty seconds in a hotel room without the flipping the safety latch; hopefully he doesn’t either.
I tend to spend an unusual amount of time searching for that perfect hotel price and location. Always fearing that the minute I pull the trigger and book, a bad review will surface or a better deal with pop up. Unfortunately; that often leaves me forgetting where I ended up booking; and who with. Did I end up booking directly or go with Booking.com or Travelocity? Where’s my email confirmation? Or was it in a text to my personal phone or did I have it sent to my work email? Where is it!! More than once I have been convinced that I knew where I was going only to find myself presenting myself at the wrong hotel. Oops! Back in the car headed to their neighboring competitor that was probably $5 cheaper!
Then you get to your room and there’s always something you would rather not deal with but it’s one night so why go through the hassle of moving all your stuff only to find the next room isn’t any better. You can pretty much be guaranteed that either the heat, air or refrigerator is going to be loud; flip a coin. Or you get to your room only to realize they’ve recently shampooed the carpet and the floors are soggy wet. Thankfully, I always travel with my flip flops so I just make a practice of never taking my shoes off in a hotel room.
The best one was the time I booked a room in South Haven for our anniversary. We enjoyed a leisurely drive over there in the ’55 Bellaire and went to check into our hotel before dinner. Only to find that I had booked for the next night. The clerk so pleasantly tried to calm me by saying there was no harm done, they would have the room ready tomorrow when we came back. That was a hard pass; we weren’t coming back on Sunday night and of course there wasn’t a room to be had anywhere so we ended up driving home in the dark with the headlights flickering off and on. A real nail biter.
Last week’s hotel was no exception. I don’t even want to know how many hours I spent looking for the perfect hotel for Scott to come out to. As you know, he was never released so it really didn’t matter. The room was much smaller than the pictures led me to believe it was but it was clean and the price was right for what it was. The lock was a little sketchy but I figured out before having to go to the front desk. The upstairs neighbors weren’t too loud and even though I saw dogs in the window when I left in the mornings, I never heard them barking.
My “WTH was I thinking” moment came at the end of my stay. Just when I thought I had broken my pattern of failed hotel bookings. My daughter’s birthday was Friday the 9th and I knew I couldn’t get into the Airbnb until Saturday the 10th. It was while I was contemplating spending the night with her on Friday night rather than driving back late that I decided to look at my booking information one more time. Sure enough; I had booked the room from Sept 2nd to Sept 9th. My Airbnb was for Sept 10th to Sept 24th. Sounds good right? Wrong. When you check out by 11 a.m. on the 9th it leaves you on the street for the night of the 9th. Thankfully it was Marlena’s birthday and I was able to load up my car and cooler and stay with her on Friday night. Homelessness avoided.
I ended up staying at home Saturday and Sunday night which should be relaxing but it really isn’t. When you know that it’s only a matter of time before undesirables figure out you aren’t living at your home, it’s a little scary to pull in the drive in the dark and enter your house that’s been vacant for a week. If that isn’t enough, it has stormed during the night every night I’ve returned home. It was heart-warming to be greeted by our pet chicken each morning. I found her peaking in the office door or windows first thing in the morning; looking for me. I went out and called for her and she comes waddling over – priceless. She stands at the screen door and talks to me. She’s not a dog but she will do in a pinch. Our dog Zeus probably thinks we’ve left him for good. He’s living the good life with Scott’s daughter so he may have already decided to not come back home to us when this is all over.
You might be asking yourself; what was the point to all this useless information? What does this have to do with cancer? I think it goes to show that while I may have some of you fooled into thinking I’m a confident, independent and intelligent woman sailing through this world of adversity, in reality I make just as many mistakes as the next person; maybe more. An average person. Thankfully, I am just too determined, ok stubborn, to let a few mistakes keep me from getting back up and trying again until I get it right.