As I mentioned yesterday, Nate and I are taking our youngest daughter Helena to New York City this week.
And before you start thinking that I have locked up my eldest daughter in the basement because she’s a moody, emotional, fifteen year old hormone, don’t worry. She’s in Myrtle Beach for the week with her dad. Now she’ll be a moody, emotional, fifteen year old hormone with a tan.
Our New York City trip is spur-of-the-moment. And despite the whole expired-drivers-license-strip-search-terror-watch-list-OH-MY-GOD fiasco I’m dealing with at the moment, I was pretty proud of myself for 47.5 seconds because I don’t do anything on the spur of the moment except retain water and sprout cold sores.
And that’s probably because when I do venture out of my meticulously orchestrated comfort zone, it leads to expired-drivers-license-strip-search-terror-watch-list-OH-MY-GOD scenarios.
See how that works?
We booked our hotel through Priceline and I feel very comfortable in saying that we will never book anything through Priceline again. Yes, we got a good deal on the room but honestly, it was not worth the huge, gaping hole in our kitchen wall from repeatedly slamming my head against it. Nor the concussion I sustained afterward.
Due to my anal-retentive, semi obsessive-compulsive nature, I need to know the who/what/when/where/why and how of everything that involves me, my family and checked baggage. Bidding on a reservation at a sight-unseen hotel in an unconfirmed location pretty much guarantees that my world will cease to exist as I know it and I will be left in an alternate universe with Kotex pads in my armpits to soak up all the stress sweat.
It’s hard enough moving to a new place, but who wants to meet their extra terrestial neighbors wearing feminine hygiene products as accessories?
Not me, that’s who.
Unfortunately, buying anything off the Internet, especially sight unseen, is right up Nate’s alley, which alley I like to refer to as HERE LIES OUR MASTERCARD, MAY IT REST IN PEACE Drive.
Nate purchased a hotel room in New York City through Priceline and all was good for 47.5 seconds until I contacted the hotel to confirm the reservation and was told in no uncertain terms that our room could be occupied by no more than two people at any given moment lest we die a horribly, grisly and immediate death. Or be in violation of the fire code. One or the other, I can’t remember.
So I said But, but, but …
And they said I’m sorry, this happens all the time with Priceline and we encourage our guests to contact us directly for reservations. And no, we can’t upgrade you to a larger room because there are none available. And no, since you went through Priceline, we cannot cancel your reservation. And no, we cannot hate Priceline. Officially, anyway. Please contact them directly for help. We are very sorry.
So I said But, but, but …
And they said No, your daughter cannot sleep in the safe or the bathtub. Please don’t ask again because that’s just weird. Unfortunately, our hands our tied. Again, we are very sorry.
So I said But, but, but …
And they said See what you get for being spontaneous? EMBRACE WHO YOU ARE. There’s a reason your towels are folded with a straight edge and organized by color and purpose. Who did you think you were kidding?
Actually, that might have been my subconscious.
I called Priceline and spoke with three graduates of the Bend Over and Grip Those Ankles School of Communication, each of whom had obviously majored in SCREW YOU, with the third, a supervisor, having a double major in AND THE HORSE YOU RODE IN ON and was advised of the following:
- Contact the hotel
- Contact the hotel directly
- Directly contact the hotel
- Did you try contacting the hotel?
- This is not our problem
- This is not our problem, to the tenth power
- No cancellations
- No refunds
- Too bad, so sad
- SUCKS TO BE YOU
Then I cried.
Then Nate told me to call the hotel again.
Then I told Nate to call himself, I was busy having a breakdown.
Then Nate told me I should be the one to call since I was already holding the phone.
Then I told Nate that by the same token, we could just wait three seconds and then his small intestine could make the call.
This went on for awhile, until I decided to be the bigger person which, roughly translated, sounds like OH, FOR SHIT’S SAKE! FINE! And I called the hotel again.
I spoke with three different people who told me there were no upgrades available and wow, we were really in a pickle, weren’t we? And I answered YES.
Because I knew it wasn’t the hotel employees’ faults that there were no additional rooms available and what did I expect them to do? Build one?
Finally, by the grace of God who either took pity on me or got distracted, I was finally transferred to one last employee who discovered, of all things, an upgrade available. Right there on his monitor for everyone in the whole wide world to see.
Apparently, his three counterparts do not reside in the whole wide world. I’m not sure where they reside but wherever it is, I hope their room will only house two of them and the third has to sleep in the air shaft.
I called twice more than night and spoke with two different hotel employees who confirmed our upgrade.
I called the next morning and spoke with yet another employee who also confirmed our upgrade.
So I’m trying to relax and transfer all my worry and anxiety about the hotel room to the issue of whether or not I can even board the plane to New York City in the first place.
The hypotheticals surrounding this one moment of spontaneity are threatening to eat my sanity.
I hope Homeland Security and the TSA and the airline like me. And the baked cookies I’m bringing them.
I hope they give me a boarding pass. And another one on the way back. One’s not going to do me a whole lot of good without the other.
I hope the plane doesn’t crash, even though that would totally resolve the entire hotel issue and give me one less thing to worry about.
If we don’t crash, I hope our hotel room is upgraded.
I hope we have a great time and don’t crash on the way home.
And failing all that, I hope Priceline falls off the edge of the earth.
So I can shout after them SUCKS TO BE YOU.