Friday, July 1, 2011

my hotel

   Four of us are jammed in the back seat of a taxi; two adults and two teens, all balancing heavy backpacks on our laps, and one focusing on NOT throwing up in this car.  

   Michael perches in the front seat, his leg space full of a 17-kilo duffel, with his 11-year old legs resting on top.

   Mark efficiently whips out his travel folder and tells the driver the name of the street and the name of the hotel where we will spend the next several hours.  In response, there's silence from the front seat. 

   Well, after all, it IS 3 o'clock in the morning.

   The driver finally begins to speak.  All in a language we don't know.  The only word I catch is "Marriot."

"Tidak," says Mark.  "No."  He then repeats the name of the street and the name of the hotel.   

   There's silence again.  The driver eventually responds once more, naming yet another hotel.  "Why doesn't he get it?" I wonder.

   It's on the 3rd repetition of this process that the humor and embarrassment simultaneously penetrate my fogged brain.  Because the name of our hotel, the name Mark keeps on repeating, is "My Hotel."

   This poor driver must have been wondering WHY these arrogant, ignorant Americans keep on insisting that he deliver them to "THEIR HOTEL" on a given street?  Are they expecting him to somehow miraculously guess which one out of a whole block-full of hotels they want?!?

   At that point we showed the driver the paperwork with the name "My Hotel" in print.  

   "Oh...That's a new one," he says.  He's not seen it before on that street.  Thirty minutes later, as the taxi deposited us at the door of "My Hotel" I felt just a little redeemed, and I couldn't help but chuckle over how much confusion a name like that might cause!

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