A few years ago Spencer joined Soccer Club. In Soccer Club (as opposed to regular recreational soccer) he gets to play other school and club teams and gets to travel around the Midwest to soccer tournaments. This weekend his new U11 team had a tournament in Muscatine.
Muscatine is a pretty small town. According to the 2000 census they have less than 23,000 people in town. And this weekend they were hosting both the soccer tournament AND a softball tournament. For a city that has about 10 hotels total, hosting TWO big sporting events should be a big no-no.
But nobody listens to me. What’s new?
Muscatine isn’t that far from us so we weren’t going to get a hotel room. Just like the last Muscatine tournament, we were just going to drive up each day for the games and then drive home at night.
But then we found out Spencer’s team played at 8am on both Saturday and Sunday. If you’ve known me longer than 45 seconds then you know I don’t do 8am. I don’t even go to work that early. I am as far from a morning person as you can get.
So I made a reservation at a local hotel. All was good. We had two queen beds. And there was a pool. We were set.
But a few days later (about a week before our trip), I got a note from Expedia. “Call me. There’s a problem,” was the jist of the email.
Turns out the hotel was overbooked and didn’t have room for us. The dude from Expedia apologized profusely and said he’d make it right. He was going to find me a better hotel and only charge me the same price and give me a $100 certificate for a future trip booked through Expedia. I was totally down with that.
Only he couldn’t find any other hotels. The whole city was booked. Imagine that. A small city. Who is hosting both a soccer tournament and softball tournament. With only 10 hotels. Is booked. This is me giving you the evil eye, city of Muscatine. Consider yourself on notice.
The only room Expedia could find for me was at the Super 8. I was a little leary ’cause Super 8 sounded like a not so nice hotel. But maybe that’s because I’m a huge snob. Who knows.
So the Expedia dude got me booked at the Super 8. He said, “Is that going to be ok?”
I replied, “Yeah, as long as it doesn’t have bugs.”
“Oh stop. Of course it doesn’t have bugs,” he joked in his adorable English accent.
So Friday night, Spencer, Caleb and I checked in to our room at the Super 8. [Skyler had a birthday party to go to and Lee had a softball game so they joined us later that night.]
First, our room was on the second floor. And the hotel had no elevator. WTF?!? What hotel with more than one floor doesn’t have an elevator. Do they think people who come to Muscatine don’t have luggage?
Even though we were only staying two nights, with five people we had a pretty big bag. And with Lee still back at home, I had to do my best Popeye impersonation and lug the bag up one flight of stairs. Turn on the landing and lug it up the second flight of stairs.
Then, the second I opened the door to our room I was smacked across the face with the smell of mildew. I could hear my allergies groan and my asthma kicking up it’s heels.
But what could I do? There were no other hotels available. I did seriously consider sleeping in the van, but I figured the kids would protest. Then I thought about just driving home and waking up at 5am for the morning game. But then my inner night owl beat the crap out of my tiny inner morning person and I relented.
The next morning I woke up with my face swollen two sizes too big and my nose running like somebody forgot to turn off the cold faucet.
And to make matters better, Lee informed me that he got up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and saw several bugs in there.
Kill me. Kill me now.
Luckily we were busy all day. In fact I had to drive all the way back home for several hours for Skyler’s cheer competition and then all the way back to Muscatine for Spencer’s next soccer game. [This is my life. Constantly in the car. When I'm not in shitty motels.] So I didn’t have to hang out in the hotel much.
When I got back Lee informed me that he cleaned out the dehumidifier in the room. [What hotel has a separate stand-alone dehumidifier in the room? Crappy ones.] He also pulled the filter out of the air conditioner. It was apparently covered in dirty and grime and things we can’t speak of. He took them outside, smacked them on the back wall of the hotel and replaced them.
For the love of God, Super 8. Clean your damn filters more than once in a lifetime.
Then as we were getting ready for bed, Caleb went in to the bathroom. He came out and said, “Why are there bugs in the bathroom?”
Why indeed Caleb? If an 8-year-old realizes a hotel shouldn’t have bugs, why doesn’t a hotel realize it shouldn’t have bugs. I’m just sayin’.
So, needless to say, we will NEVER stay in the Super 8 in Muscatine EVER AGAIN. I’d rather sleep in my car. Or wake up at 5am. Or skip the tournament all together. Anything is better than bugs and swollen faces.