Well, That Ain’t Right

My traveler’s curse reared its ugly head the second we entered our 3rd-floor corner room.

Up until that moment, the hotel was a normal Hilton. The neat and pretty entranceway, the lobby was over-decorated with holiday lights and blinking snowmen, but it was definitely a Hilton Hotel. I purposely chose Hilton because I wanted a high-end, luxurious place to hang out in when we were not on the beach. Sigh.

The room was so sparse and empty that it appeared it had been robbed before we got there. When you entered, you were in the “living room” area. A sofa, desk and a large old chair. Nothing matched the other. No carpets, area rugs, pillows. No overhead light. When you flipped the switch by the door, a dim round light came on in the tiny hallway that connected the living room, bathroom, and bedroom.

The light switch in the bedroom turned off the dome light. There was no overhead light fixture here either. So forget trying to find your p.j.’s in your luggage. It was dark. Oh, wait! There were two lamps by the beds. They did not shed light on the room though. They were lights to read in bed with. LED penlights on swivels, mounted into the wall between the two beds. BTW, the light you can see in the photo is sunshine.

The bathroom had good lighting, but it was noisy. They had the fan attached to the switch, so it was all or nothing. They must have purchased the T.P. and tissues from China. Thin, one-ply, recycled sandpaper. There was no toilet roll holder, so the TP sat in a cubby hole under the counter. It was sad. At least this room had a small trash can. None in the living or bedrooms, not even one by the desk.

Our “kitchen” was a long table that was nailed to the wall, like a shelf. We had a small microwave and a little one-cup Keurig coffee maker. Coffee pods, sugar & creamer were next to it. No coffee cups, however. I called the front desk and requested coffee cups. An hour later, a worker showed up with a plastic bag full of K-cups and packets of sugar & creamer. No cups to make and drink the coffee. I sighed and called the desk again, explaining that we were good with supplies but we needed the cups to drink the coffee out of. An hour passed and I called to check on our request. They asked me to check the outside of the door because that is where they probably hung the bag. No bag. They will be right up, she assured me. I found the cups hanging outside the door before I went to bed. It was a darned shame that the coffee pot did not work right. That was not much of a surprise, considering.

Below the microwave was a baby refrigerator that had NO temp controls inside of it. I looked inside it and all around the outside. No control dial or button of any kind. I asked Maggie to look for one, in case I missed it. Nope, it does not. I put my insulin on the lowest shelf in the door and hoped it would not freeze. It did not. The back of the unit was what froze things. You learned things as you go at this Hilton.

The next day, I wanted to get a different room, but Maggie did not think it would make any difference. She peeked into other rooms when housekeeping was in there and they were just like ours. I decided to give it another day. Besides, the sun was out, the air was warm and sultry, and the beach was calling us. We spent as much time in the sun as we could stand.

The winds were so strong! They did have red flag warnings out because of the wind. It was a warm wind, so that was not the problem. My beach hat was equipped with a strap to keep it from blowing off my head. But the wind had its fun with the hat anyway and the thing beat my head and face the whole time. I was not having fun, so I left Maggie happily in her beach chair, reading her book and I went back to our not-so-Hilton room. We did have a balcony that sheltered us from most of the wind and when it was sunny out we could be out and not in the room.

View from Room 301

The balcony had a fabulous view. I wrote in my journal and enjoyed the sun without wind. I caught myself dozing off, but I did not want to take a nap in our room because it was cold in there. The heater/AC controls did not change anything. The fan blew cold air 24/7 – even when the unit was turned off.

Karma must have been getting back at us for having our window open in the winter at college and freezing out the whole 3rd floor. If you or someone you know roomed in the North Tower, 3rd floor 77-78 at SEMO, please accept my apologies.

To be continued…

Adventures in Ireland

Our ports of calls also included Ireland – Dublin was our first Irish city.

I don’t know what I was picturing, but it wasn’t true.  Dublin is a huge city with skyscrapers, horrible traffic and all that.

It seemed that every road the bus driver took, you could see this colorful building.  I have no idea what the building holds, but I would like to think it is a toy store. You can’t tell by this photo, but each colored block is shaped like a puzzle piece.  I will probably do some research about it in my spare time.

Our next stop was Phoenix Park, the largest enclosed public park in Europe.
The building was not a big deal, except they had a large sign with our granddaughter’s name on it. The Queen’s garden had unique and downright weird plants. I knew my girls would like to see the Dragon’s Tongue!

Hubby bored with church’s              Hey, a maze that even I could get through!

We went back into Dublin for an afternoon tour to see “Traditional Irish Entertainment” The adventure took place in a pub, no less, and everyone got to drink a Guinness, I had Sprite Zero, and we watched a lass do some Riverdance moves.

Then, the talented lass, one Jean Kennedy•, decided we could be taught a few ‘mild’ dance moves.  Your welcome for sparing you any photo or video evidence of this complete mess.  A lot of giggles and fun was had by all.

  • Watch for Jean Kennedy if you see a performance of Riverdance next summer in the USA.  Our tour group is pretty darn sure that she will pass the try-outs taking place in Ireland this week.  Break a Leg, Jean!!

♥  TTFN  ♥

P.S.  It was not until I zoomed in did I realize the Irish “phonebooth” was supposed to be a cell phone. Ha!

Adventures in Norway

We did two tours in Bergen, Norway.  An “overview” of the town by bus for 2 hours. It was pouring rain and windy, so very few took advantage of the photo op stops. I would have, but she stopped in random places where there was not anything interesting to photograph.  In my humble opinion.

I usually got out at photo stops to stretch my legs and breath fresh air. But I just wanted to stay seated so I did not have to get out and back on the bus. My legs were recovered from Paris, BTW.  The buses were a whole new form of torture,  that I will gripe about later…

The afternoon adventure we took a bus over to Grieg’s House & Recital. Edvard Grieg, Norway’s famous composer.  He wrote music, inspired by Norwegian folk music, and sought to raise it’s profile in his composing and performing.

Grieg’s house was unique because his roof(s) were covered with sod and blended into the landscape.  I sure would have hated to mow them!

Hubby in front of a sodded rooftop

Side View of Recital Hall




We were delighted to be invited to a piano recital by a student of the composer’s music. Martha Berit Belt played for us a sampling of Grieg’s compositions. I sat in the upper back row so I could watch her hands and listen. Hubby and the others took seats down closer to the front, but the stairs looked steeper than my balance could handle.

More photos and back to the bus! Now we headed down the road to a medieval stave church. Built out of wood in 1150, then moved to a new site in 1883 to preserve and protect it from local demolition.

Very Medieval looking, heh?

It had a spooky aura about it, which may have been the gravesite in front of the building…


The bus ride back to the ship was happy. No more buses the rest of the trip! Or so I thought…

♥  TTFN  ♥