Friday, April 23, 2010

Hotel Etiquette - or lack thereof

One lesson we've tried to each our kids is to be considerate of others. Easy to say, harder to put into practice, huh? But they got some first-hand experience on the importance of being considerate that I wanted to share.

Last night we drove to Chattanooga - about a 2-hour drive for us - and stayed at a Double Tree Inn. Because of hubby's business traveling, we often get free nights because of the points he accumulates. So we figured why not stay free then go to the Tennessee Aquarium the next morning?

The kids are always excited about staying at hotels, no matter how small or how many amenities. To them, every hotel room is a big deal. We don't let them turn the TV up loud, we remind them to keep their voices down and don't let them jump up and down out of respect for others beside, below or above us who might be trying to rest.

We had just turned in for the night (about 10:30, I think) when a woman in the room next to us began yelling obscenities. At the top of her voice. Her very shrill voice.

Apparently she was having an argument via cell phone with a man - I know this because she kept screaming that she was going to hang up the phone, she was going to hang up the phone. I wanted to scream back, "Just do it already!" Every other word out of her mouth was a curse word, most commonly the F-bomb.

The children were appalled. Oh, they didn't even realize she was cursing. They were appalled at her lack of consideration for those around her. "Doesn't she know people are trying to sleep?" "How rude!' they pronounced.

I used the opportunity to remind them that this was why Daddy and I tried to get them to think before they turned up the TV so loudly or talked at the top of their voices or jumped up and down on the bed. I don't know that they had ever really understood until it happened to them.

We turned the bedside radio clock on to a classical station to try to drown her out. Didn't work. Forty-five minutes later Charles called guest services and explained that we were trying to sleep, that we had young children and the woman next door was making a ruckus too loud for us to sleep. They promised to send someone up to "analyze" the situation and take action if necessary. A few minutes later we heard security knock on her door and ask if she was okay. She was told to pipe down because she was disturbing other guests. She did.

Lesson learned.

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