Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Arizoning Out: The Interstitial Cautionary Tale of the Worst Hotel Ever

 Doug started to get really sleepy as we drove East towards Silver City and asked if I could find us a hotel. We were about 120 miles away. I offered to drive, but he really wanted to get off the road and get a hotel. We'd get up early in the morning, get going. See the next things. Yay!

Worst decision ever.

Doug had me look things up on Travelocity, which up to this point had not steered us wrong. He picked the Travelodge, but we got there and there was no Travelodge. There was a Motel 6 in its place, with the sign turned inside out on the pole.

Should have been an instant red flag.


Doug was tired and cranky and pulled into the lot.  He vetoed my complaints that I kind of really wanted to go across the street to the Holiday Inn Express, because this place was lookin', shady-assed.

At the register the sign said "We are no longer a Motel 6. We are the Willcox Inn." And I don't remember if it said "Cash Only" but ... Doug forked out 38 bucks for the room and we got placed in the 2nd exterior room down from the office. The guy at the counter was really nice, and I kind of was happy to stop for the night.

Getting to the room, I had other thoughts.

The room had a tile floor, which usually screams "Murder Hotel" to me because tile is easier to clean than carpeting when a murder takes place. Just mop the brains, guts and blood up and it's like new!

The 4 other rooms rented on our row all had their windows and doors wide open, which I thought was odd. I walked down to get some extra steps on my Fitbit (I was so close to 10k) and there was a man in a room sitting reading, with two dogs sleeping on his bed. There was a mom and dad with two small screaming yelling children and the mom looked exhausted. There was a very athletic man in biker shorts, and I surmised that his vehicle was the one with the four bikes and the Triathlon stickers on the trailer attached to the motorcycle.

We opened our door and windows too, as the room was a million degrees. It was about 50 degrees outside, but ... a million inside.

It should have been thunder storming or snowing in the doorway with the hot and cold air systems crashing into one another.

Eating dinner, drinking some beer, sitting on the uncomfortable bed, I looked at the tissue-thin pillows and walked to the front desk (needing my coat to do so after sitting in the room sweating like I was in a Hot Yoga class...) I asked the guy for a couple more pillows and he looked at me like I was a little crazy. He seemed unsure that there may be more pillows. I was thinking to myself "Oh my God, man. You have 200 un-rented rooms in this complex. There are not two more pillows?"

A guy came in and it was obvious he worked there, so he said he'd go get pillows. About ten minutes later, second guy, smiling and happy, shows up at my door with two more tissue thin pillows for our little heads.

Part of me can't be mad at them because they were so nice, so kind. But this place was just the pits.

We got ready for bed and Doug closed up the window and the door. Immediately I hated him. I tell him to open the window again, but he insists someone will come in the window and kill us and steal our things.

There is no screen on the window, so in theory, yes. A ninja murderer who wants dirty laundry and my camera could indeed come in and kill us. It is, after all, a murder hotel.

I went into the bathroom and wet a hand towel (note: one hand towel, one bath towel, no face cloth. In the morning when I would need to shower, I guessed I'd be going to get more towels from the front desk). I wanted to wet my face and the back of my neck. I considered just taking a shower then, but was just too tired to deal.

Falling into bed, I am baking like a sous vide chicken breast. I tossed and turned until about 2am and finally got up to open the window.

As I was sliding the window along the not-very-willing slider, it fell off the track and began falling towards me. I thought to myself, this giant plate glass slider window is going to fall, shatter, cut me into pieces, and I will bleed to death on this murder hotel floor. Thank God it is a tile floor! Easy cleanup after the lady from Massachusetts dies in here! I managed to hold the window up, and put it back where it needed to be, and doing so, the curtain fell off the rod.

Not giving a shit anymore, I stood on a rickety chair in my underpants and t-shirt to put the curtain back onto the guides, and my hand encountered boiling hot air.

Boiling. No lie. Wavy, hot, boiling air.

I turned and looked over my shoulder and saw there was a heating vent above the bathroom door, and hot air was pumping out of the ventilation system.

Curtain returned to place, I walked over to the thermostat, which was set to "Cool" and 63 degrees.

Cool my fat ass. I turned it off. Instantly, the room instantly began to cool down. Doug muttered at me, something about the window shouldn't be open and I told him to shut up. I finally fell asleep, and eventually at some point, pulled the sheet around me because I'd cooled off enough to need it.

Awake in the morning, Doug went in to shower and reported that the shower was actually really nice. The shower head was powerful, and the water hot. He was happy. Stoked. I went in to shower and noted there was no shampoo in the bathroom. There was one small soap rectangle, which Doug had used the night before and just then in the shower.

I re-dressed and unhappily headed to the front desk to ask.

There was a new guy at the desk, he was on a computer with earbuds in, so he didn't see me there at first. He looked up and slowly un-budded his ears and asked me what I needed.

Not nearly as nice as the guys the night before.

"Do you have shampoo? There is none in my room."

He looked around the office area, obviously at the piles of shampoo sitting on the other two empty desks. He said to me, in all sincerity, "No, not really."

"Not really?" I asked with a note of disbelief. "You either do, or you don't. You don't Not Really have shampoo."

My NY bitch was starting to show. A little.

"We have bars of soap," he answered.

I pulled my ponytail straight up off the side of my head and said "Yeah. Bars of soap don't wash hair like this too well."

"Well you can wait until Dollar General opens. I think they open at 8?"

"Thanks, I'll pass. I don't really want to wait 90 minutes for a store to open."

He started to suggest the Circle K gas station up the road and I walked out the door.  Not really, indeed.

I got back to the room, Doug was organizing his things and I put on my pants and found my baseball hat. He asked if I was going to shower and I said "Not really."

I went to wash my face and lifted up the hand towel that I'd used the night before. It didn't stay on the small hook by the sink very well, and had fallen onto the vanity top.

Several small bugs or some variety, I'm not really sure, ran all over the place.

Okay then. Not really. Not really cool.

I came out of the room, picked up all my things, threw them in my bag and backpack and went out to the car. I told Doug I was happy to just go. I told him about all the little weird possible cockroaches or some sort of weird water-seeking desert monster bugs. The bugs that probably all came through the open bedroom window while we were sleeping, or up through the drain of the not bad shower, or out from the heating duct where it was ten thousand degrees.

We hit the road, he had a good night's sleep overall. But he also conceded that I was right - this was a bad idea.

Tile floors, man. Tile floors are the dead give away... Never stay at a motel with tile floors.

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