Safety traveling, safety traveling while along-these phrases conjure a score of thoughts, images, and feelings. Mention safety while traveling to someone and watch Pandora’s box rip open to hear strong opinions, advice, and stories. My feelings about travel safety? They are the same when I’m no traveling- don’t act like a victim, make good decisions, and go forth. What I’m trying to do here is to set the stage because while I’ve traveled the globe and I’ve experienced a lot of good and my fair share of the not-so-good, but nothing could have prepared me for what I experienced last week.
We all hear about locking your hotel door not just when you’re not in the room. This is basic right. Check. Another standard safety travel procedure is to close your curtains especially at night. Check again. Keep valuables locked in a safe. Another simple concept. But, what else is necessary with room safety?
Last week when I was apparently naively frolicking away from my lovely hotel located in the Theater District to visit the Guggenheim, I returned and decided to take a quick shower. Afterward, I threw on my night shirt to relax and read for a while when I couldn’t help but notice the most putrid odor emanating from….me! From my night shirt.
To my horror, my night shirt reeked of piss. Just the night before, it smelled piss free. Naturally right! Onto the floor I flung this rank shirt and I reached for another garment. To my horror, another shirt smelled like piss as did a pair of pants. My suitcase smelled like piss. I stood in my posh hotel room with my head spinning out of confusion and disbelief.
I racked my brain to generate some sort of plausible solution like maybe my dogs from back home peed on my clothes. Not likely and even less likely because I boarded them days before we left for NY. And one of the shirts that smelled was from a drawer that the dogs couldn’t even access. On top of that, my night shirt smelled fine the night before. Neither I nor my husband have ever been sleep-walkers so, that’s out. And neither of us take Ambien so we couldn’t blame this behavior on a drug-induced sleep state.
While I sat on the bed, I felt a whirl of conflicting emotions: shock, confusion, disbelief, horror, hilarity that this even happened. I wondered how I should even respond? If I told the hotel, would they even believe me? Would whomever did this feel even more pleasure if he/she found out that I complained? Would that give this perpetrator more power? Am I now at a point where I need to lock up my belongings when I leave my hotel? Literally, it felt as if someone marked territory that wasn’t theirs. Did #me too cover when someone pisses on your items or shall I add it to the ever-expanding list? Not okay.
I can answer one question. Yes, I am now at a point where I am going to get a small combination lock for a new suitcase to lock up my belongings for when I leave my room lest someone decide to get cute and pee on my clothes…again. Be warned my fellow travelers. Be warned for yourself.