When we pulled up to our resort hotel, I was unimpressed. I mean, we did budget this trip so that it was cost efficient (and I had no room to complain because I didn’t pay didlysquat!) Granted, our resort was literally right next to the beach (actually on it!) so it looked a bit ragged due to the saltwater air (I assume.)
We begin to unpack our bags out of the car and that’s when the drama began! My big sister checks us in and tells us what room number to go to. She didn’t look completely satisfied.
Well, as we’re carrying our bags into our room, hiking between the car and the elevator, the valets on duty found it appropriate to verbalize the need to move our vehicle.
*Initiate hypothetical conversation*
First off, sir, we paid good money to be in this hotel and as you can clearly see, we are in the process of moving our luggage out of the car so we can move it out of the way.
Second, I understand that we were given a 20-30 minute window to complete this activity. However, from the time that the car was parked, to the time that we checked in officially, at least 5 minutes had passed. So, yeah, we might just be a bit behind schedule so forgive us for your company cutting into our time.
Third, I don’t see you helping us out! You’re the valet remember? I see you found time to help everyone else move luggage out of their vehicle yet you only continued to stare at us. Humph! We lugged all of that luggage by ourselves.
Fourth, exactly what rush were you in? When we pulled up, there was a line. OK. By the time we finished unloading half of our luggage, the line had vanished (because apparently we are slow?) so exactly whom were we stalling? No, I think you just had nothing better to do so you unnecessarily exercised your ability to rush your guests.
*Hypothetical conversation terminated*
Well, after we got our bags up to our room, we relax for a minute. We relish in the fact that we made it to South Padre and the vacation could officially begin. However, as we are changing into our swimming attire, my big sister quickly tells us why she was looking unsatisfied earlier.
Apparently, she booked this room a month in advance so we had pretty much all rights reserved. She booked the room through a third-party company but it got the room booked regardless. Still, because she’s smart, she called the actual resort to get complete clarity as to exactly what she would received with her particular package. She was supposed to receive a room with 2 twin beds, a living room, and a pullout sofa-bed. Well, exactly, where’s the rest of the package Pearl?
Our room only had the 2 twin beds! I was already annoyed by this. It was later explained to us (and by us I mean my big sister and I) by the staff that the package that my sister bought didn’t apply to all rooms listed under that package. Essentially, they left out some information when telling her all of what to expect from the package. She was highly upset and I don’t blame her; I was angry for her.
What made that news particularly bitter was the fact that she had called multiple times to continuously re-clarify her information. She called on multiple days and talked to multiple employees who all said the same thing about the package and they were all wrong. (Bad management much? Who needs to get fired for that screw-up?)
Then to add to it, the staff also told us that they overbooked for this Memorial Day weekend. Do you know what that means? They basically told us that they couldn’t move us into a room that actually includes all parts of the package that my sister paid for (so we all got gypped out of our payment!)
Um, staff? Let me holla at you for a sec. IT IS NOT OUT FAULT THAT YOU OVERBOOKED. WE PAID FOR A PARTICULAR PACKAGE AND THAT’S WHAT WE SHOULD GET. WE ARE NOT OBLIGATED TO FEEL SORRY FOR YOUR OWN SCREW-UPS. ACT PROFESSIONAL.
So, now, not only are we all stressed, then we tried to be compensated for the loss. I mean, my sister pleaded with the manager to compensate. She informed him about how if the proper information was in circulation, that this issue could have been avoided; she informed him that she had 3 children to take care of this weekend (that’d be my nephew, my little sister and her boyfriend) and that they all needed proper places to sleep. (I told her I wouldn’t mind sleeping in the only chair in the room to make sure everyone else had a comfortable place to sleep.)
Well, the manager told us that he couldn’t upgrade us and the best he could do for compensation was to charge, mind you, CHARGE us for an extra $25 cot that I could sleep on for the rest of the stay, and offer one free breakfast meal to our group.
(In our heads, we were pissed the FUCK off! I know how my family gets down. If that had been my parents, we probably would’ve not only been upgraded but gotten all of our money back. My Dad in particular is very good at arguing to management and name-dropping.)
Well, we sighed and accepted our offer because that was the best we could get out of it all. Then we proceed onward with the rest of our vacation.
We are all angry but we did what we could so we moved on. We spent the rest of our day at the beach.
I took some time to go and shoot photos on my film camera (which, surprise! I took with me.) I think I spent at least an hour shooting and I believe I got some excellent shot! I can’t wait to see how they turn out. For some reason, I was really drawn to the things people were doing at the beach. It suddenly became all about activity for me.
Funny thing happened though. I was approached by one gentlemen to stop photographing his children. Personally, I didn’t too much care what he said but I respectfully moved right along with my day. I got the shot I wanted so it didn’t matter. (That’s one beautiful thing I can exercise with my artistic right—it hardly ever matters what anyone says.)
And another thing too actually! I was shooting a picture of this group of ladies and the dog that was with them. The group next to them who was watching me, asked me what I was taking pictures for. I told them that it was for personal work and not commercially related. That conversation actually felt nice to have because I reassured myself that I don’t have to be shooting for anyone but myself if I want to.
Shooting those photos felt like the highlight of my day. I was really happy with all that was going on! But, I tell ya, all that humidity was a no-no for my camera equipment. I had to keep cleaning my lens and protecting it from sand, water and wind. Not to mention, I forgot to bring a spare bag to carry my camera stuff in separately so I was lugging it all around by hand. A drag but I got through it.
Later, after I finished, I met up with the rest of my group for lunch. We all went to the beach but then they all left to go eat and I wasn’t hungry so I shot photos. Well, I come back and everyone has eaten and is full. I order a grilled chicken sandwich and my big sister picks up my tab because I’m poor.
While we were there though, my big sister and her son got into a very heated argument. Let’s just say it didn’t end well for my nephew. (I really won’t go into the details because I won’t put my sister’s business out there like that.) But at the end of it all, I did have a talk with my nephew to give both him and my sister a breather from each other.
See, my nephew is 9 and he’s still learning how to not act like a spoiled brat. So, I sat down and talked with him for like, 30 minutes (that’s what it felt like anyway) about what happened, what he had done and why his mother acted the way she did. I was calm about it and I asked questions and kept him engaged to make sure he understood what I said.
He did actually. He did very well I must admit. I think that he felt much better afterwards and he at least understood why he did what he did and why my sister did what she did. He’s still got a lot to learn but he’ll learn those lessons at his own pace. I think he’ll be fine though.
(I would tell you what I told him but I said so much that I honestly can’t remember. So, unfortunately, even though I kinda want to share the knowledge I imparted to him, I really can’t. )