Eyes Open

Reading time: 3 mins

Note: This is the last of my posts written whilst on the train home on Thursday.

Hotel life is odd. I don’t think i could be the travelling businessman, constantly moving from one hotel room to another, eating over-priced, rather average food, and ultimately being very very lonely.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice for a time and I’m a friendly enough guy that I can, and do, strike up conversations with strangers. I’m not shy and can usually spend 20 minutes or so chatting to someone before it starts getting too awkward. But then I’d think 20 minutes is about right. If you don’t have anything in common or haven’t start to find a common ground by then it’s probably time to cut your losses and head to your room and the myriad of entertainment possibilities it contains.

It’s a bit like being a big kid I guess, staying at a hotel. You know someone else will clear up after you so if you end up in a twin room then you CAN use one to eat dinner in, gorging yourself on room service pizza and ice cream, then leave the crumb filled sheets to sleep in the other bed. You can push the beds together and spend a hugely entertaining 6 minutes trying to extract yourself from between them when you forget and try and sit down in the middle. And that’s all before you realise that the door is locked, no-one can see you and you really can wander around naked with nary a neighbour in sight, as it were.

At this point I would like to mention that I am not obsessed with wandering around naked, I know I have mentioned it recently but it is not something I actively consider of a morning.

Masturbation on the other hand… (is very tricky… badooomksshhhhh).

In saying that, there is the image of the lonely businessman sitting on the edge of the bed, tissues in hand, watching porn. I think those days may be long gone with everyone and their mother now owning laptops and freely available internet access, opening the full gamut of pornographic content and allowing any kinky indulgence to be enjoyed. No longer must those poor lonely wankers suffer soft-focus, third-rate kicks. Or so I’m told.

Hold up, did I say freely available internet access? Of course I meant the £15 an hour option, or possibly a flaky and unreliable wireless connection which makes the chance of orgasm all the more inprobable, the moment of ectasy stolen away because “You have lost your wireless connection”.

I pause at this point, not to consider what I’ve just written (I’ll leave the sex blogging to those who do it so much more eloquently than I) but because as I am writing this on the train and the most STUNNING double rainbow has just leapt into view. Half the carriage is oohhhing and ahhhhing, and everyone now shares a small smile, a shared moment, a connection. Such simple yet glorious moments should not be missed.

Bugger, it’s disappeared behind a hill. Where was I?

Ohh yes, train journeys. I’m sitting at a table and across from me is another young(ish) man and we are both pecking away at the keyboard of our pristine white MacBooks, both connected by headphone cables in an attempt to block out the rest of the occupants. He didn’t see the rainbow, steadfastly refusing to raise his head, uncurious (incurious?) as to all the fuss and pointing, almost perversely enjoying the isolation. How sad.

It is one thing to enjoy and embrace technology, quite another to lose track of those small moments of human connection that define life. A shared conversation in a hotel bar, the acknowledged embarassment brought by a quizzical look of a maid wondering why she has two beds to clean, a dazzling shimmering light bringing colour to a dour train carriage. These are the moments of life.

It sounds twee, and anytime I start to pondering the joy of such simple things I always have one image in my head, stolen from celluloid, a white polythene bag caught in the wind, swirling around with the leaves.

Such things are all around us, you just need to raise your head to see them.

14 comments

  1. The antonym to curious is indifferent.

    And yes it is very sad indeed. I love rainbows, and indeed every facet of nature that might make one ooh, or indeed aah.

    And no, I’m not talking about porn.

  2. I have a suspicion that there might be too much information from personal experience in that post Gordon (or maybe it was the after-effects of the night of banging from the next room…?) 😉

  3. Hello Gordon, long time since I commented, but much water under the bridge, My mate Tony gone, and (cough) I’ve started blogging again, in a modest way.

    What I wanted to say is that I think you may have been cynically seeding this post with keywords designed to boost the hits from Google. or not.

    But £15 per hour? I never pay for sex internet access.

  4. Such cynics.

    NO personal experience was involved thank you… keywords? no… can’t a blogger just write anymore? Apparently not.. sheesh!

  5. Currys sells a TV adaptor that requires an TV ariel. Now all hotel donkeyporn is decoded by the TV, as the remote controls the TV not the transmission.

    With the £20 usb TV device its fee recordable donkey porn for all

    Ah for google…

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  6. We all know what businessmen’s hotels are like. There’s a priority check-in section where you wait behind some rope, on a bit of carpet. There are staff in shiny suits who say things like “If there’s anything else at all for yourself at all”. And you are given a credit card key that makes lots of whirring noises when you put it in the lock but will not, no matter what you do, open the door.

    After you’ve kicked it down, you have the room. There’s no obvious button to turn off the fan, which sounds like a Foxbat jet. The light switch by the bed turns all the lights off, except one. Which can only be extinguished by hitting the bulb with your shoe. The plug you need to charge your mobile is always behind the mini bar, and the “tea and coffee making facilities” are designed to ensure you can’t make either.

    No, really: the kettle lead is never more than a foot long and the brown powder they put in the sachets is way closer on the periodic table to radium F than it is to coffee.

    The restaurant, furnished in beige, is overseen by a woman who says: “Can I get any bread items for yourself at all, sir?” and then hands you over to a 14-year-old Latvian girl who arrived in Britain that morning on the underside of a Eurostar train. Beer is not a word she’s familiar with, which is annoying because it’s what you want most of all in the world.

    Your fellow diners are chomping their way through their suppers, some reading books, some newspapers, and there’s always one whose reading the hotel’s smoking policy leaflet over and over again. Just killing time till they can go to their room and watch pornography.

    Businessmen’s hotels, I think, are the most miserable, soul destroying, soulless, energy sapping, embarrassing, badly run and badly organised edifices in the entire world. I’d rather stay in an igloo. And that’s before we get to the food.

    The menus are always written in a massively squiggly, curly-whirly typeface. And there’s much talk of jus and things being drizzled onto other things. But you know the chef is not from Paris or Rome. He’s from Darlington and he hasn’t a clue what he’s doing.

  7. Hotel life is really rather dull. I’m glad that when I go away my company puts me in nice hotels. Well at least they’re nicer than I would use in real life. Staying in a hotel for work reasons never feels like real life. I’ve discovered that British porn and especially the porn in UK hotels is really rather lame. Who can masturbate to that?

  8. Indifferent is not the same as incurious. If he were indifferent, he would have glanced up, not seen what the fuss was about, then carried on working. Incurious, he couldn’t even be bothered to look up. Uncurious sounds even more emphatic than incurious, in that he was aware of the fuss and deliberately decided not to look.

    Great, the British language, innit?

  9. Are un and in curious actually real words?

    so I can be unbothered , inbothered , un bred, inbred, unfathomable, infathomable (spelling not a stong point at back o mindnight)

  10. Interesting comments, as I type I’m on my own and 400+ miles from home, but just to say:

    Gordon : “those poor wankers” – so you’re one of the 2% who don’t? Yeah right 😉

    hans stolte : donkeys? no mate – wrong height, I honestly don’t think you’ve thought of the dimensions. Start at a sheep and work up.

    Jeremy : cynical but entirely accurate

    Peggy : yes you can, the british girls are the hottest around. Try going a bit more furiously.

    Ian’s mum : well yes of course, and if you lie on the other hand for a bit it’ll go numb & feel like someone else’s. That’ll probably work for either sex.

    Glad to be of assistance.!!

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