One of the biggest problems I have traveling is that it leaves my wife home, alone, for a week or two at a time. It’s not her safety that I’m worried about; She has a 2nd degree black belt, three dogs, guns, etc… No, she has a tendency to clean the house while I’m gone. Not “vacuum and bleach” clean, no sir. I’m talking about cleaning the house of things that I own(ed) that she didn’t like anymore. Take my lucky football, for example. In our wedding vows, I wrote in that she’s not allowed to disturb me for six hours on Sunday during football season (it was my one and only “demand” on my list vs. her list of 27, so it’s all good). That’s when I sit on the couch with my lucky football and watch the games. Well during the pre-season this year, my lucky football sort of “disappeared.” Sure, she agreed on the vows, but that doesn’t mean the lucky football didn’t find the dumpster, I’m hip to her game. “Sweetheart, have you seen my lucky football?” “Nope. Did you look for it?” I didn’t give her the satisfaction of going on the wild goose chase; I know she pitched it so I just bought myself a new one. One of these days I’m going to get up enough “gumption” to return the favor…
Hotel maids have the opposite problem. They refuse to throw ANYTHING away! Old fast-food sacks, newspapers on the floor of the bathroom, and empty travel toothpaste tubes are all saved. Sometimes they’re even stacked neatly and re-arranged! Nope, if you want it thrown away, you absolutely MUST place it in the trashcan. That’s where the fun begins.
I can’t say that I blame the maid. Policy must dictate that “if you’re not sure if it’s trash, leave it in place.” I’d hate for the world to be deprived of the first perpetual motion machine because it was designed on a cocktail napkin that the maid threw away. Still, it would be nice if they’d give us a bigger trashcan. After reading the morning’s USA Today and stuffing that in the can, the trash is full.
So when I bring a sack full of Popeye’s chicken back to my room, I stick a small note on the refuse that says “TRASH.” Otherwise, I’ll return home from work the next day and that sack (full of chicken bones and the stench of yesterday’s beans and rice) will still be sitting there.
Oh well… I need to get back home soon, check on my new lucky football, etc… There might even be three or four pairs of women’s shoes on the kitchen floor that have “dumpster” written all over them!
EXTRA: If you have questions for Ken regarding business travel, hotels, airplanes, etc, please call 1-877-49-EXPERT. Your questions will be recorded and Ken will answer the best ones in his Ask the Expert podcast show.