Thoughts for Friday – 8th May 2015

My new job role has seen me travel extensively across the country for the last few weeks. My final destination for April was a town called Burgess Hill, not too far from Brighton, a place which is a lot of fun when the weather is warm and the sun is shining and less so when it’s cold, windy, and raining.

5-road-traffic-circle-roundaboutI left early on the Monday and had assumed that the journey would take perhaps 90 minutes by car. I found that I’d sorely underestimated how long it would take to arrive at my destination and this was primarily to do with the fact that the route I would need to take had at least 25 roundabouts to contend with. Now don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against roundabouts (or circular traffic islands, if you like) per se, I just have an issue when 20-odd of the sodding things are within a five-mile radius of each other. Surely the Ancient Romans had the right idea by building roads in a straight line, thus negating the need for wibbly-wobbly, faffy bits of road with hairpin bends and dozens of roundabouts?

Can you tell that these hideous concrete constructions irk me a little?

I arrived at my destination at least an hour later than I had expected and questioned the sanity of my colleague who had booked the accommodation for the both of us when my eyes fell on what looked like a dilapidated old public house (for my American readers: think ‘bar’). It turns out that my first impression was pretty accurate when I finally checked in and accessed my room.

This is how I woke up each morning after a freezing night of sleep

This is how I woke up each morning after a freezing night of sleep

Firstly, the lock on my door was unpredictable at best and only locked when it wanted to, thus sometimes locking me in and/or out of my room. I then found out that the bathroom window did not fully close (allowing the cold air to enter my room), the TV didn’t work, my gas central heating only tended to operate when I was not in my room, there was no hot water in the shower, and that I had a wall-sized mirror in my room that wasn’t actually fixed to any of the walls. I then had visions of the thing falling on me in the middle of the night and this wouldn’t have seemed so bad had the staff at the pub actually bothered to enter my room on a daily basis to do simple housekeeping tasks such as make the bed and remove used cups and saucers etc. At first I assumed that room service was not part of the package, until my colleague gleefully told me that his room had been attended to every single day…

P10401021On the second night we drove into Brighton to marvel at its beach (which was full of stones and not sand) and its famous pier. Lets go and have a look around, we thought, until we realised that the pier was closing and that if we entered we’d likely be locked in for the night. Deciding against being locked in on a freezing cold pier, we then went in search of somewhere to eat. The fact that my colleague suggested a ‘gentleman’s’ club by accident shall forever remain our secret…

PizzaIn the end we found a quaint little Italian restaurant and ordered pizzas all round (as you do). The only issue was that we were sat on the table closest to the window which meant that people walking past could see us eating our food. This worked both ways though as we could sit and watch the alarming amount of inebriated people stumble towards the pier and laugh when they tripped and/or fell. The drunk to sober ratio of people in Brighton must have been somewhere close to 5:1 that night and I wonder if this is a usual occurrence for a Tuesday night or just because my colleague and I were in town.

If I thought things at our overnight accommodation couldn’t get any worse, then I was very much mistaken when I ordered an evening meal from their ‘specials’ menu. Well, if serving lukewarm-cold food is a speciality, they really hit the mark with what they presented to me that night. I felt awkward and embarrassed when I had to ask for it to be taken away. The staff apologised profusely but still saw fit to charge me for the meal itself when I settled my bill that night.

I won’t publicly shame the establishment in which I stayed, but it is fair to say that, next time I’m delivering sessions in the local vicinity, I won’t be staying there again…

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17 Comments

Filed under Thoughts for Friday

17 responses to “Thoughts for Friday – 8th May 2015

  1. Now sing after me: “Oh we do like to be beside the seaside…”

  2. So it was a good trip…..

  3. Dreadful. I’ have nightmares after this stay.
    Here, if you have a complaint about the food, usually the establishment will offer a replacement or take the cost off you bill. Terrible place. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    • I couldn’t quite believe that they had the stones to charge me for the meal that I had to send back, but it pretty much summed up my stay there.

      The staff seemed more interested in checking out their Facebook pages than they did helping their paying customers…

      The one thing I have learned from this escapade is that I will book my own accommodation from now on! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I n.e.e.d. to know. If the door kept locking you or out, how did you manage to get in or out? ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

    • By keeping my mobile phone close at hand!

      Imagine my colleague’s mirth when I rang him and had to ask for assistance in getting out of my own room.

      I fear that I shall never live it down… ๐Ÿ™‚

      • So what caused the door to lock? Was the door or frame warped or was the problem with the lock itself?
        Once I ran out to the store with my little girl. I heard a clunk, paused but jumped into the car anyway. When we returned, my key was useless to open the door. Had to call a locksmith from the neighbor’s. This was before cell phones. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      • I think it was a dodgy door lock, although the establishment as a whole was pretty dodgy anyway… ๐Ÿ™‚

        It tends to be my kind of luck to get caught in these types of situations, but at least it makes for an amusing blog post!

        And thank the Lord for the invention of mobile phones, I’m not sure where we’d be without them! ๐Ÿ™‚

      • And to think we used to live without them. Talk about dark ages. ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

  5. Oh my! You may wish to rename your blog: Trials of a Traveling Trainer! ๐Ÿ˜€ What an eventful time you had – circuitous roadways, freezing cold room without maid service (or a reliable lock), a trip to the beach only to find a famous pier closed – and a colleague who not only books less than desirable quarters but then suggests visiting a ‘gentlemen’s club’! Good golly! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

    I’m sorry you had to experience these challenges, but I must say it made for an entertaining read for us! One of the (many) things I like about you is your ability to see the humor in any situation. You sure proved you could do so with this post.

    Great photos accompanying the post, too – from the roundabouts to Brighton Pier to a mouth-watering pizza. I have to admit, however, my favorite was the one of Jack Nicholson!

    • I probably should have renamed the post, ‘Going round in circles’ as that is pretty much what it felt like the whole time I was there!

      I’m glad that you enjoyed the humour throughout the piece and it was my intention to put a funny spin on the many events of that week, I fear that may have cried otherwise! ๐Ÿ™‚

      And for the record: I felt like JN every morning that I woke up in that draughty old room! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Pingback: Thoughts for Friday – 19th June 2015 | Trials of a wanna-be-published writer

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