Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Just a small town girl
There was a time when I would use any excuse to go to Halifax. It was vibrant, exciting and all that good stuff. So many stores, specialty shops, cafes, restaurants, clubs etc. But today I realized those feelings were from my 20's.
Today, in my 40's it was nothing like that. It was crowded, chaotic and annoying. Too much traffic, so many lanes, merging, turning, bicycles whizzing in and out of traffic and pedestrians who (apparently) think it's OK to just dash out in front of moving cars. Oh and don't forget the maze of one-way streets downtown - so if you turn left one street too soon, you have to take 20 flippin minutes to loop back around the circle.
And parking downtown.........HA ! I arrive downtown just at lunch hour (when all the pedestrians are running freely through the streets oblivious to traffic laws). I get to the hotel where my meeting is being held. No apparent guest parking. Directly across the street is a parking lot. The signs say paid hourly parking but both entrances are wide open. No toll booths or ticket machines. I thought "this is just too good to be true". I parked and as I walked across the street I started to get that nagging feeling. "This can't be right. What if I come out a dusk and rush hour and my car has been towed??"
I walked into the hotel lobby where I was met by Mr. Snotty Concierge. I told him I was at the hotel for a meeting and wanted to know where I could park. (This is a reasonable question, Right?)
He looks at me and in a very bad faux british accent says..."Well, I don't know"............
Huh? What do you mean you don't know? Aren't you the Concierge for this hotel?? So I am a bit taken aback, so I tell him I have parked in the parking lot across the street. Is that OK? He scrunches up his stupid face and says "What parking lot?"
Now people - - - the ONLY thing across the street from this hotel is a parking lot. The-only-thing!! So now I am starting to get annoyed, like a lot. We walk out the door and I point across the street like a moron. As I am AGAIN asking him about this lot - TWICE he put a finger up in the air, then clutched his friggin headset and says (in that fake British accent) "ooh, I'm being summoned". Seriously ?? He was prancing around with that headset like he was running The Plaza in New York City. Its a flippin Marriott for pete's sake!
He's prancing around with that fake accent and that stupid headset like he is all that and a bag of chips!
Now I'm mad. I ask him when they host meetings/conferences, where do people park? Jeeves looks at me again. Then he stumbles out some babble about having to contact the meeting organizer to ask about parking blah blah blah.
Finally I'm so close to doing something really special with that headset - I take a deep breath and remind him - I am prepared to pay for parking - I expect to pay for parking - I know its the city - you pay to park - I JUST NEED TO KNOW WHERE
Sigh....Jeeves is now befuddled and I am just fed up. I said never mind, I'll take my chances in the mystery lot. If I get towed that would still be a better experience than this exchange. I plopped my fed-up butt in the lobby lounge to wait for my session to start. (Yes, bitchy I know)
A few minutes later Jeeves prances over and says.......(are you ready for this?) "The valet can park your car underground for the afternoon for $10" WELL, why didn't you friggin say that in the first place??
I was so happy to get back to my sweet little small town tonight. When I was younger "they" said it would happen. I didn't believe it. As I get older I am becoming a cranky old woman!