Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Honeymoon in Europe - Part III

Need to catch up?
Honeymoon in Europe - Part I
Honeymoon in Europe - Part II

Barcelona, SPAIN - 9:00am

The scene: The Hilton Diagonal Mar Hotel

The Characters:
Joe Quirk – kind of awkwardly handsome, exhausted from not sleeping on the plane over to Europe and waiting to crash, hard.
Lionel – the clerk at the hotel and the only Spanish man ever named Lionel, telling Joe quite directly that his room will not be ready for another half hour.

My mood was deteriorating rapidly from frustratingly exhausted to I’m going to stab you with the nearest blunt object, with echoes of “Why a spoon, cousin?”, “It’s dull, it’ll hurt more!” ringing through my head. However, even though the dude was named Lionel, I decided to give him a break. I’d waited nine and a half hours to sleep, what’s another thirty minutes?

My wife and I sat on a half circle sofa with lots of pillows, the sheer amount of which made me think that maybe they didn’t want us to sit there. I think I was partially right. As we sat there, my wife reading a USA today (in Spain) and me propping my eyes open with the sports section (The Phillies had lost. Shocker.), I watched a maid come over to the couch opposite us, which was identical to the one we sat on, and rather pointedly fluffed up the pillows on it, and as she turned away I got the slightest dirty look from her. Like I wanted to be sitting here and not in some overpriced room, curled up in bed. Sheesh.

All I really wanted to do was close my eyes on the couch, but I had a bad experience with a hotel once. Back then, we were unmarried and living in sin (and loving it!). We were in a NY hotel, a nice one, and when we went to check in, our room wasn’t ready. Only in that case, we were there after the usual check-in time. So, we were a little ticked. Exhausted, I sat in a very comfortable armchair to wait for our room to be ready. And, naturally, I closed my eyes. Like, two seconds later, there’s a tough foreign hotel security dude in my face. “You cannot sleep in the lobby!” he says in a thick accent. Now, the accent didn’t bother me, nor the fact that he was foreign. I’m mentioning it because with the accent, that statement sounded 16 times harsher than it probably was. Dude almost made me poo.

To which I wanted to respond, “Hey genius! I wouldn’t be sleeping out here if your bumblefuck staff had my goddamn room ready!” But I didn’t, because tough guy could’ve sliced me in twain with his accent. Sliced me in twain. Huh, never thought I’d get to use that in a sentence.

But I digress. A lot.

Back to the situation at hand. My eyelids now have barbells hanging from them and the minute hand on my watch is using a walker. 9:30. The half hour has passed. Finally, FINALLY, I head to the counter, jazzed as hell.

“I’m sorry, sir, but your room is not ready yet.”

They’re SO… FUCKING… POLITE.

My “What?!” wasn’t so much an angry, staccato growl as it was a pleading, whimpering sigh.

“How long?”

“Another half hour, sir. I’m sorry”

I’ve stayed in plenty of hotels, from the fancy schmancy ones to the ones where they swap out the ‘h’ for an ‘m’. But tell me, how does it take an hour to make up one room?! Even with the gourmet soaps and granola nut cluster toilet paper, there’s no way it should take that long.
Unless they had to remove a dead hooker from under the mattress, what in holy hell was going on?

I realize the maids have to clean hundreds of rooms. But so far as I could tell, my wife and I were the only ones in the lobby waiting for a room. Clean the one goddamn room, and I’m out of your hair. What’s the deal?

I can’t wait in the lobby anymore, what with the Phillies losing and the narrow eyed pillow fluffing maid.

In hindsight, maybe I should have told her to quit fluffing the pillows and go get the dead hooker out of my room.

To be continued...

Hugs and Handjobs,

-JQ

www.thewaitstaff.com

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