OT:Southern California

For the last 2 weeks, I have been in Manhattan Beach, California on a business trip.  It’s been several years since I visited southern California, but its never been an area that I’m familiar with, so I can’t really tell what’s changed and what’s stayed the same.   Southern California is definitely a beautiful part of the country.  For the entire duration of my trip, the weather had been very nice.  Not too hot, and  constant 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit ..it was perfect weather.

However, not everything was blissful.  The hotel that my company put me in wasn’t too great.  Although the location was very good (walking distance from supermarkets, department stores and restaurants, and  not to mention only a 5 minute drive to work, which allowed me to sleep in pretty late every morning, the hotel itself really sucked.  It had more of a motel, motor lodge type of feel to it.

They initially put me on the lower floor of a two story unit.  The “guests” (more like a herd of elephants) upstairs where so horribly loud that it was very difficult getting to sleep every night.  The ceiling would thump and squeal for several hours every night because the person/people upstairs apparently had a hard time sitting still for more than 5 minutes at a time.

But the straw that broke the camel’s back came on the Friday night during my trip.  At about 3AM, I heard what started out as a knocking on my window.  Obviously this woke me up, but I figured that it was either the people upstairs again or the people next door.  But then the knocking gradually got louder and louder until it became banging.  We’re not talking bang! bang! bang!, please let me in.  More like BANG! BANG! BANG! I’M COMING IN!  This soon escalated into what sounded like an attempt to kick the door open.  Obviously terrified at this point, I called the front desk and told them that someone was trying to break into my room.  I  resisted the temptation to look out the window or open the door, because there was no telling what this person’s intentions were.

After a few minutes, the thrashing subsided, and I could hear some voices in the distance.  I couldn’t hear the conversation, but I assumed that it may have been the security guard or police speaking to the person who was trying to break into my room.  After several minutes of peace, I was so worked up by the this, and the adrenaline was coursing so much through my veins, that I couldn’t back to sleep.  I peeked out the window and saw that no one was there, but just to be safe, I grabbed a steak knife from the kitchen and put it in my back pocket.

I opened the front door and immediately noticed a plastic key card laying on the ground in front of the door.  I immediately checked my wallet to make sure that I had both of my key cards, and I did.   It immediately dawned on me that the person trying to break into my room probably dropped this key.  I picked it up and walked over to the front office, in the hopes that they could  shed some light on the situation, or at least put my mind at peace so I could get to sleep.

I gave the front desk agent the key and demanded that I get a room change.  He explained to me that one of the guests was very drunk and had mistaken my room for his on.  I was very upset by this and demanded that the change my room THAT DAY.  They agreed.

A few hours later, as I was having breakfast in the hotel lobby, a group of Hispanic kids several tables away were talking about their drunken tirade from the night before.  This immediately got my attention.  As the conversation progressed, I found the perpetrator that terrorized me several hours earlier.  He was probably in his late teens or early 20’s, and apparently very drunk and disorientated from having too much to drink.  I had the good mind to go over and tell him how he terrorized me during his tirade and embarrass him in front of his friends, but decided to let it be.  He was just a stupid kid who do what stupid kids do, so there would be no point in me telling me how dumb he is because its not going to change anything.

The hotel put me in a slightly quieter unit on the upper floor.  It was still noisy from the pool parties and the traffic from the streets, but it was an improvement.  But despite the crappy hotel experience, it was a pretty good trip.  Hopefully I can go back again soon.






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