Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Hotel Woes On The Road

It’s not all fun and glory on the road as a travel writer. Sometimes you gets what you get. Here's one of the worst hotels.

Sleeping Room: It is high summer and the wall-mounted air conditioning unit’s performance falls somewhere between finicky and abjectly useless. Yet inexplicably the bed is outfitted with a heavy wool blanket and padded spread. Pillows are fabric thin. Asking for additional pillows produces stained sponge rubber wafers that smell of Vicks VapoRub and some species of mammalian urine.

A small screen TV hangs precariously from a wall mount. It's so close to the ceiling only a presbyopic giraffe, watching through the spinning blades of the ceiling fan, can view it comfortably.

A single narrow shelf nailed to the back wall serves as a desk. The ill-matched chair is so low it brings to mind fond childhood memories of sitting with one’s chin just a few inches over the Thanksgiving dinner table while balancing on a Sears Roebuck catalog.

The Bath: Secured by a single rusty bolt, a padded toilet ring pinches one’s tender nethers and lets out a little vinyl fart upon sitting down. Paper comes off the roll mashed and pre-moistened with unidentifiable fluid. A twist of the sink spigot produces a high velocity surge of water that douses the back wall and floor.

A half pane of smoked Plexiglas encloses the tub-cum-shower. Its purpose is a mystery as it neither protects the bathroom from shower spray, nor provides privacy. At any given moment, water could range from scalding to frigid. This requires the bather perform a kind of indigenous dance over the surface of the tub: rinse, yelp, hop, test the stream temperature, then repeat steps 1 through ...

Water comes out of the sink taps at an interesting 37-degree angle. The light over the sink glows just enough to throw one’s face into deep shadows while applying make-up.

There is no “Do Not Disturb” sign to hangs on the doorknob. Perhaps it’s a given that one must be already disturbed to stay here.

No comments:

Post a Comment