Everything was arranged. The whole Saturday planned. I'd thunk about it and thunk about it until I could thunk no more. I'd planned and double planned, I'd checked and double checked. And finally it was done. All were on the same page. Everyone was in the same ball park. We'd run up the flag and everyone saluted. That means, of course, something was certain to go awry. And it did. We arrived at the hotel, which was nearing end of its renovation, to discover that there would be no hot breakfast served on Saturday morning. Our plans for the next day started with everyone gathering at the hotel for a hot breakfast at 8:30 am. This hotel always has a hot breakfast. And it still does. Starting again on Sunday, but for Saturday, no hot breakfast.
I was immediately annoyed. We're pretty regular customers at this hotel and the staff were doing everything to try to bring me back to a state of 'non-annoyance'. Overall, I think they like us as customers and as people, we say please and thank you, we don't trash our rooms, we leave tips for the maids, we know our breakfast servers by name, and because we are known and liked - my upset bothered them. I couldn't bring myself to care. They offered to give us a tour of the renovations, to see the new restaurant area. Joe quickly agreed before I could snipe about what good was a new area when we couldn't use it to further our plans.
We went into the new restaurant and saw familiar staff in new uniforms and they all came over to greet us and I managed a thin smile. On our way back to the elevator I spoke pointedly to Joe about having to call 'everyone' (one call) to rearrange meeting. The staff bustled about to find us addresses of nearby places for breakfast. All meant a huge long push in the wheelchair and I made sure they knew that - the disability card can be a very easy one to play.
I got up into my room. Joe was frosty with me. He didn't think it was anyone's fault, that anyone purposefully delayed renovations, that anyone deserved being treated as if they personally set out to upset my plans. Yes, its true, I've tried to hide it - Joe has a personality disorder.
Joe went down to get the luggage and I signed on to the Internet to check emails. As I did so a tiny thought formed at the back of my mind, 'Hingsburger, you can be such an asshole.' It was a thought that just got bigger and bigger and bigger. Finally to shut it up, I picked up a pen and wrote a note to the front desk saying that I was tired from so much travel and I had over reacted to the 'no hot breakfast' thing and I shouldn't have taken my disappointment out on them. When Joe deposited the luggage and was about to take the cart back down stairs, I handed him the note and asked him to give it to the front desk. He took the note.
A few minutes later the phone rang. The clerk who had taken us on the tour called. She said that I didn't need to apologize, she understood my frustration. I said that being frustrated was one thing but being an asshole was another. I said, 'One of the things about being an adult is knowing that when you act childishly that you need to own up and apologize. I behaved like a spoiled child and I need to say sorry for it. I need to reestablish my view of myself as a mature and decent guy.'
'Wow. OK.' she said,
'Apology accepted,' I asked.
'Certainly,' she said,
'And sir,' she continued.'
''Yes,' I said.
'Thanks,' she said.
I got into bed later and didn't even think about the morrow. Plans were easily rearranged, we are back on schedule, it's all a go - until something goes wrong again. But with a good sleep and a fresh lesson in humility, I'll handle it just fine, I think.'