Since our initial vacation plans had fallen through, we set out to meet with Namine’s online school personnel. The meeting itself is tomorrow, but since it’s more than four hours away, we are staying at a hotel tonight.

When we got to the hotel, we parked on the second floor of the parking garage — which, luckily, happened to free on Sundays. A sign in the elevator directed us to the third floor, not the first, in order to enter the hotel via the skywalk. Once there, however, there was only a set of escalators leading to the first floor, and nothing else. I muttered, “Handicap accessible, my ass.” Jessica laughed and Namine gasped at my foul mouth.

There was a phone on the wall, so I picked it up. I was immediately connected to the front desk, and I explained as calmly (and possibly sarcastically) as I could that my daughter’s wheelchair would not survive the trip. “Someone will be up to help you immediately,” the emotionless desk monkey intoned. I thanked the voice and hung up.

A portly gentleman — who seemed so happy to be there that I’m sure he moonlights as Santa when the season calls for it — soon appeared. He explained in about three times as many words as were necessary that we had to take the elevator down to the first floor and cross the street to enter the hotel. He apologized again for the inconvenience and took our heavier bags as recompense.

As we walked toward the elevator again, I said, “Well, that was convoluted.”

Namine turned to look up at me. “Don’t call him that,” she scolded.

We eventually made our way to the front desk to check in. The woman seemed less like a robot in person, and offered us a handicap-accessible room by way of apology for the inconvenience of the escalator. Sure, I said. Why not? Once we got into our room, Namine could hardly contain her excitement.

She thought the walk-in closet was fascinating.


She was enthralled with the full-length mirror. She spent the next fifteen minutes making faces into it.



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