Saturday, May 31, 2008

Holiday Inn

This probably shows how shallow I am, but let the truth be told.

I am loving staying in hotels!

Today I came home from visiting with Leonard Pennario and reading him the draft of a chapter I wrote about how he was in Tanglewood, teaching and giving recitals, during the summer of 1949. It is a great chapter because Leonard has great opinions and observations on Bernstein and Lukas Foss, people like that. Anyway, I come back to where I am staying, which is this nifty Corporateville Holiday Inn. And there is this perfectly clean bathtub, with the mat folded over the tub just right, and a nicely wrapped bar of chi-chi soap, with the brand name "Cleanse," set atop the towel. Aaaaaaahhhh!

And this is just a Holiday Inn! It's not even as upscale as the last place I stayed at was. This place is right next door, by the way. So I got lost only once today. It's funny how Holiday Inns always have that Holiday Inn smell. Even when you're in a new Holiday Inn in the midst of suburbia and office parks. They had that smell when I was a kid and they have it yet. I wonder if they have it in a can at some warehouse and whenever a new Holiday Inn opens, they get one of those cans and give it a good spray. That is the only theory that makes sense.

Advantages to this Holiday Inn, over the place I stayed a couple of weeks ago: The pool and hot tub actually have prettier surroundings. I wouldn't have thought that was possible. I just got out of the pool. It looks amazing at night. There were people in the hot tub and as I was toweling off after the pool, I addressed the hot tub. "Beautiful night," I said.

People are not used to people speaking up like that. They are not used to Buffalonians, especially Buffalonians like me who have been up for 36 hours straight flying on planes and interviewing great piano virtuosi. "What did you say?" someone said.

I said, "I said that it's a beautiful night."

Then we all had this nice conversation, and I went upstairs happy. I have this beautiful room on the top floor with an incredible view of Corporate San Diego. I am looking forward to tomorrow morning. They have a free breakfast, including -- get this -- made-to-order omelets. Would Howard make me an omelet to order at home? I ask you!

Also they have free WiFi, permitting me to post this life-or-death bulletin. A bottle of Two-Buck Chuck -- that's that $2 Charles Shaw wine you can buy at Trader Joe's -- and you are in heaven! Tomorrow I have to go to Trader Joe's. I must make this picture complete.

How am I going to go back home to overdue bills and that upstairs bathtub, the one that Larry Solomon has to wear a Haz-Mat suit to clean?

Why can't my house be more like this Holiday Inn?

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