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  • Writer's pictureJane Rubin

My Next Job - Hotel Bouncer

Updated: Mar 8, 2023

8 am - you've got to be kidding...!it

A few days ago, our group of 6 was looking for some chairs and umbrellas on the beach. Unfortunately, our hotel had run out and we were scanning the beach for vacated set ups. The only thing we found was a pair of occupied chairs with two unused umbrellas. So, I walked over to the very oversized older couple who were basking in the sun and asked if I could take one of the umbrellas. To my surprise, they said, "No, we are using them." Of course, being the shy, easily intimidated type, I replied, "No, I don't think you are. Perhaps you could let my family of 6 have one of those - after all, they aren't even opened." The wife quickly replied that they were planning to use them in an hour. AN HOUR?! REALLY???

So, I took a deep breath and suggested that they let us have one for an hour. They shook their heads, no. I then asked if I must be mistaken, did they own the umbrellas or were they the property of the hotel? I was met with a stare and silence. So, I politely said, "let me check with the hotel regarding their policy." As I turned to walk to the teenager charged with dealing with these matters, The two of them quickly and awkwardly rolled off their lounge chairs to raise their umbrellas.

Later that day, sitting poolside, after helping the towel teenager identify and open up a few unoccupied chaises that had 'reserved' towels but no humans in sight for several hours, we noticed the same couple enter the pool. I was flabbergasted to see that they had also set towels and belongings on two prime poolside chairs (best used by parents supervising children in the water) and settle into them. I didn't know whether to scream or laugh. My crew grew worried that I was about to make a scene, so I just gave them an evil stare. I wondered if they had missed the lessons on sharing and taking turns in Kindergarten?!

I have observed a number of other behaviors that have astonished me - guests opening liter sized water bottles in the hotel shop and then changing their minds and refusing to pay, the sandy towel shake off precariously close to a man eating his lunch and my favorite, the loud phone guy. So, since we are planning to be here for a few more days, I thought it might be worth meeting with the hotel manager and making a few helpful suggestions. I'll bet she can't wait to meet me!

My husband isn't sure why this stuff annoys me so much and that perhaps I take it a little too far. I think back to the expression, "The Ugly American" that was so familiar in Europe and other non-American countries back in my 20's when I first began traveling. It evolved from the perception that Americans were self-serving, loud and impolite. I find it embarrassing that simple common decency is such a stretch for so many people. I've come to believe that it's because there are few consequences. So I may consider offering my services as the hotel bouncer for the next few days. One step at a time.

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