Saturday, June 24, 2017

Hotel Living

I have to confess. I like hotel living. I find it luxurious to have someone clean my bathroom and change the sheets and towels. These days, hotels are offering a “go green” option where they will provide housekeeping but not change the sheets and towels for three days. I always opt for that. After all, I don’t change my sheets or towels every day when I’m home. And getting clean sheets and towels if I stay more than two or three nights is still a treat.

I recently stayed at a hotel that offered a “no housekeeping today” option. I took them up on it based on my schedule and needs.

I have learned that even if I do partake in these choices, and I run out of those in-room packets of coffee, the hotel is more than happy to deliver some packets to my room. Or I can pick some up at the front desk.

Besides the niceties of housekeeping, hotel living includes someone else cooking my meals and doing the dishes. Most places that I stay offer a hot breakfast. If I’m attending a conference or workshop, the conference often provides breakfast. Hotels also have a restaurant attached, so dinner after a long day is not an issue; whether it is eating in the restaurant or ordering room service. And while some hotels do not have a restaurant in their arrangement, there is always one (or more) chain restaurants right next door.

While hotel living takes me out of my element, and therefore routine, I find that I can develop a routine in my new little world. I always unpack the suitcase; hanging up clothes and putting others in the dresser drawers. I set up my toiletries in the bathroom, and arrange them in a way that is convenient for my new surroundings. In the morning, I sip my coffee while I talk with my husband on the phone before getting ready for my day. Evenings are spent catching up on emails, and relaxing while I watch TV or read a book.

However, hotel living reminds me of what I miss when I am not home. I miss the schedule my husband and I have established over the years. I miss my two furry children; especially the one who curls up on my lap every evening. I miss my friends and colleagues.

You see, hotel living is not conducive to making connections or being part of a community. I am an anonymous traveler who might strike up a conversation with a stranger. But that is where it ends. There are no familiar faces; no sharing of weekend tales on Monday morning with fellow co-workers. No church family that greets me with a smile and a “welcome back” on Sunday morning. No backyard barbeques with friends during the long summer days.

I enjoy hotel living. Partly because it is a break from the mundane. Mostly, because it reminds me of the many blessings of my home, my family and friends, and my community.

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