Showing posts with label hotels. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hotels. Show all posts

Monday

10 Things That Made Me Laugh in Ireland



Laughter is good for you.


I have often said it and I do believe it is true and it was certainly good for us during that trip we made for Fred with work in Ireland.





It's the trip that produced the blog post Top 10 things that make a good Hotel Room.


The first comment I had on that blog post was about a hospitality tray and it really made me laugh as I thought of a certain incident during that trip.


So where better to start my list of







1. The Missing ....?

It was in the same bedroom that had all those other failures of being a good hotel room and although it was something we definitely noticed we had to laugh at it because it just seemed so funny compared to everything else that was wrong in the room.


Have a look at this picture and see if you can notice the mistake.





Yes we were in a double room with 2 saucers & 2 spoons 
but only 1 cup.


I can quite understand it if a spoon is missing because well who takes sugar these days (don't laugh - we do) but I certainly think we might need the cup to actually drink the tea or coffee from.




2.  No Room for a Chair.  


Doesn't seem that funny well at least not until you see where there was no room for the chair.






Yes just the very place you need a chair - at the desk/dressing table.

There was so little space between it and the bottom of the bed that a chair could not be placed there and the only way I could work at the laptop was to pull the bed down even closer to the desk and sit on the end of the bed.

Oh yes and guess what  -  it was that same room again!




3.  The Gift of a Crunchie.




I
n a lovely hotel near Athlone we were greeted with this in our room.


We wondered how they greeted guests on any other days.

           
           Maybe
"Make it a Malteser Monday"
"Turn in with a Twirl on Tuesday"
"Wake up to a Walnut Whip this Wednesday"
"Take a Taste of a Twix on Thursday"
"Sit down with some Smarties this Saturday"
"Snooze after a Snickers on Sunday"



or maybe it was only the special visitors on Thursday Nights who received a special chocolate treat.




4.  The 9 Colours of Light.




One of the hotel rooms had a large wall mirror which was not unusual.

Then we discovered a panel with lots of buttons & switches beside the bed.

The buttons were numbered 1 to 9 so of course we had to press each one to see what it did.

And the result was the 9 different colours of light which appeared at the top of the mirrored wall.

The last one was just normal light but hasn't come up well in the picture.

It was rather hard to take all 9 pictures of the lights because I was giggling so much.

I just thought - What a waste of money!  Especially when lights 6 & 8 were so close in colour.




5.  The Picture Mystery.


The very next hotel brought us this puzzle.






How could they possibly manage to lose two parts of their pictures?





6.  The Cow Roundabout.



I enjoyed walking around this little town with its narrow streets and just as I realised I had got myself lost I saw this large roundabout with a cow.





Now I have nothing against roundabouts with animals as we had a beautiful one close to where we lived in Belgium but then there were several animals creating the Tervuren Fountain.
It always made me smile.

I really wasn't too sure whether it was the cow that made me laugh or the fact that the roundabout seemed too big for the narrow streets.




10 Things that made me laugh in Ireland



7.  The Case of the Missing Hotel Information Books.

In one hotel we wanted to find out the usual information about the opening hours of the hotel pool and restaurants along with info. on the surrounding area and the ever important checkout time.  So we hunted the room for the Information book or file.

The only thing I could find was a plastic covered page containing the Room Service Menu which had a rather ragged edge (never thought at the time to take a picture).

Eventually I rang reception to say that the hotel information was missing from our room only to be told that they had removed them from all of the rooms because

        wait for it

     they were getting new ones the following week.

Surely the sensible thing would have been to remove the old after they had received the new?

They must not have thought of that.

Oh and the ragged edge of the Room Service Menu   -  was obviously because they had torn the hotel information sheet out of the old info. book to be able to leave the book in the room.

Yes we could have the food menu so that we could spend more money in the hotel but we were not allowed to have other info.




8.  The Foggy Morning.


Our last morning was the morning when there was to be an eclipse of the sun but in Clonmel there was



as we had heavy fog to cover the sun.




9.  The Toilet Key.


Driving back home late that afternoon we had to make a pit stop.






and I laughed so hard when Fred held up the key on a chunky chain.

I had only ever seen that happen in the movies.




10.  A Very Appropriate Song.


We enjoy listening to music and chatting as we drive along.

Suddenly at one stage Fred started to sing "It's a Long Way to Tipperary" at which I really laughed because we were actually driving through the County of Tipperary at that time and he didn't know we were.

Of course I then suggested we might make a wee detour to go see





Tipperary town itself and we followed a few signposts only to find out that it actually was going to be a Long Way to Tipperary from where we were.


One of the hotels had given us a complimentary bottle of Tipperary water so that just had to be our Tipperary memory instead.





I'm looking forward to finding things to laugh about in other trips as well.




Top 10 Things that make a Good Hotel Room


During the month of March Fred was travelling around Southern Ireland with work.


That meant several hotel rooms to enjoy or not to enjoy.







He had to go to Sligo, Galway, Limerick and Athlone in one week which meant a lot of driving in the evenings between those cities.

I rarely travel with him but that week I decided I was going too when I saw his itinerary.

Neither of us had been to these places before so obviously it was a good opportunity to see a bit more of our neighbouring country but more importantly I did not want my husband getting too tired having to drive so much in the dark, that he might have an accident.

Now of course it also meant 4 different hotels in one week - and that is not pleasant no matter how good they are.

Then the following week he had to go to Cork and Clonmel so he asked me to go then too because of the long drives.

Another 2 hotels in 3 days.

It might sound like a great job to be able to travel and stay in hotels but when you talk to most people that do this type of job they will tell you it is not one to be envied.

Hotels are not homes away from home unless you are paying an exorbitant amount to stay in the fanciest hotels imaginable but even then no matter what your home is like

"Home is always BEST"


You will be most relaxed and comfortable in your own home.

However hotels should make every effort to make their rooms clean, odourless, warm, and inviting if they want any of us to return.

So from those weeks away and our various other trips throughout the world I have come up with my







1.  NO SMELL

One evening we walked into our allotted room and immediately lifted the phone to get moved to another room.
Someone had obviously been smoking in a non-smoking room.

I am not going to be happy & comfortable in a room that has any type of smell.




2.  ACCESSIBLE TOILET ROLL

How many times have you not felt like you almost needed to be a contortionist to be able to sit on a toilet and also reach the toilet roll holder?

Even a taller person with longer arms than me would have a problem in many hotels.




3.  COMFORTABLE BED

Ok some of us like a firmer bed and some prefer a softer bed but I think we will all agree that none of us like to feel the springs!

Yes one of the beds in our last trip was guilty of that.




4.  BEDSIDE LIGHTS

Every room should have a bedside light and I am not sure that I can remember a room that did not have one and when it is a single bed only one is required but when it is a double or larger bed then TWO are needed.

Also please, please, please let me be able to switch mine off at a different time to Fred and also not have to walk round to his side of the bed to do that.




5.  CLEAN WINDOWS

On different occasions I have opened the heavy curtains to find net curtains and then when I have opened these there are dirty windows.  So dirty they have no need for the nets, but maybe the hotels think that the nets will deter us from finding the dirty windows.

In one room in this Eire trip the rod holding the net curtains fell down as I opened the outer curtains.

Dirty Windows makes you wonder what else is dirty!


hotels should make every effort to make their rooms clean, odourless, warm, and inviting if they want us to return



6.  COMFORTABLE CHAIR

I am not JUST saying that there should be A chair in the room - oh how I hated the number of times that the only place to sit was on the bed - but I am talking about a comfortable chair not just a hard backed one by the desk/dressing table/TV stand.

In this one room this is what happened

A.  Even though there were two chairs in the room there was not enough room between the bottom of the bed and the desk to put a chair

B.  I had to pull the bed down to the desk so that I had something to sit on while I worked on my laptop and yes I know it is a LAPtop but when you are working on it for any length of time you like to have it on a table or desk.
Can you see the gap left at the top of the bed?

C.  Dirty windows.

D.  Curtain rail fell off.

E.  Only one light over the double bed.



Oh yes and this was the room we were moved to after the room with the smell!



7.  AIR CONDITIONING THAT WORKS

Repeatedly we have found that rooms have air-conditioning which is great in any country.
Mostly the little boxes on the wall will appear to give the choice of what temperature the room can be set at but how often do they actually work properly or it is obvious for us to know how to set them?



8.  TABLE AS WELL AS A DRESSING TABLE/DESK

For anyone staying more than one night in a room you can expect that they will have something they want to do other than just sit on the bed and flick through TV channels.

I often wonder why they want us to have room service (and they do because they can charge more money) but yet there is no table at which they can set the tray for us to eat.



9.  PEN & NOTEPAD

It used to be the thing we would notice immediately sitting beside the bed.  Not any longer.  The majority of rooms I now see are devoid of the pen and notepad.

No matter how long I am in a room I am bound to want to jot something down.

Like when you suddenly want to make a note of something that you have just remembered you need to do the next day or a blog idea has just flitted into your head but you are just falling asleep.

Or perhaps when you have to ring reception to find out all the simple details that should have been in the information booklet that they have removed from the room because they are putting in a new one the following week - so my question is: Why remove one before the other is there to replace it???
(True Story)




10.  QUIET WATER SYSTEMS

No-one and I mean no-one wants to be woken up by the sound of a flushing toilet in another room but sometimes that is understandable.  However we definitely do not want to be constantly hearing ever single toilet on the same floor flushing or in fact the cistern filling up again or water flowing through all the pipes on the floor.

In one hotel room it was so loud that I kept running into the bathroom because I thought our toilet was making the noise and it wasn't.



PLUS -  MY PET PEEVE!

A Gideon Bible.

So often now as we travel we find that hotels are not allowing the Gideons to come and leave bibles in all the rooms or they are now removing them.

If you feel that there should still be a Gideon bible in your hotel room please ring reception and let them know because the local branch of the Gideons would be delighted to be asked to provide more bibles.




Wednesday

Packing & Preparation for South Korea - Travel Preparation



Well we leave tomorrow so I had better be ready by now.


Last hotel bookings only done yesterday, we really leave it to the last minute in this family.








Hoping hotels are all ok, hard to tell from TripAdvisor etc. and Korean Sites, but our daughter has gone to the hotel near her and says she thinks its lovely so she booked us there for that part of the stay.



I love the initial preparation,
  • the making of lists, 
  • thinking what needs to be done before I go, 
  • clearing my calendar for while I'm away, 
  • making an itinerary, 
  • deciding on the schedule of all the preparation,
  • sorting my ongoing todo lists so that things are not due to be done while I'm away, 

I like to use packing lists and have downloaded a few different ones like this one 





and they can be so pretty and well laid out but often they are very Americanized whereas I am from the UK so I when I write pants I am referring to underwear and not to my trousers.



So I start with one of these lovely lists and then end up making my own




Also I like to detail which tops I'm planning to pack and which trousers and which swimsuits and not just write the number of them so in the end I usually ended up by resorting to my own hand written lists or a spreadsheet on the computer but now I love to use my iPad for most things and so I have tried packing apps as well and yet again I found them not just right for me.








In the end I went back to one of my favourite apps - one I use daily and used it for my packing needs for South Korea.  


The Things App by Cultured Code is my go to app for daily todos and now for lists too and it is on my iPad.



My todo lists for before and after trips are on the Things App too.

     Scheduling all the trip preparation is on the Things app too. 

          My ongoing todo lists are on the Things app too.


               AND   My calendar is on the iPad.


So in the end everything I need is on my iPad except for the itinerary for the trip.



Travel Packing and Preparation - the need to be organised


The itinerary is so involved with having to cope with 4 people travelling at different times and from different airports, then all the hotels we will be in and the different areas with a little 4 day trip for Fred & I over to Hong Kong from Seoul and of course all the times we are meeting up with friends.


I like colour coding and also prefer to have ALL details on my itinerary and then as well as that I have a labelling system for the things we need at various places and events.  (Hence the * column.)


This is what my itinerary ended up looking like






and that was just the first page of 3!




I don't like
  • the actual packing, 
  • preparation of clothes and items for packing,
  • the booking of flights and hotels 
                                 (thankfully the last one here is mostly done by my husband).


This time with a holiday to South Korea (2 locations within the country) and a trip to Hong Kong incorporated into it and then the boys coming to join us later my poor husband has to book 5 return flights & 5 single flights and this was just very taxing for him.

We are planning to meet up with 2 South Korean friends who we originally met in Belgium and spend some time with them in Seoul as well as going to Gangneung in the northeast to see places and people that our daughter is constantly telling us about so tying it all together was taking some effort.






So I said I would look after the hotels but they couldn't be booked until we knew exactly where we would be each day and the Hong Kong flights were only just done a couple of days ago so hotels just got booked yesterday.


Vaccinations are all done, easy for the boys as they were up to date with everything they needed as they have been to different African countries within the last 10 years, but not so easy for us as it took two separate trips to the health centre because we didn't have 3 arms each.

So at least these are now checked off the list too.





           
Plenty still to be done today though.


Itinerary in brief is:

  • Belfast to London tomorrow
  • London to Seoul tomorrow overnight to Friday morning
  • Friday, Saturday, Sunday in Seoul with Linda and our friend Sharon who is going to take us shopping!!
  • Seoul to Hong Kong on Monday
  • Sightseeing just me and Fred in Hong Kong Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
  • Hong Kong to Seoul on Friday 2nd Aug and Linda joins us then again
  • Jonathan & Daniel arrive in Seoul on Saturday 3rd
  • Sunday 4th and Monday 5th  in Seoul with our friend Sharon who is going to take us sightseeing this time and our other friend Park is coming to meet up with us too
  • Tuesday 6th we travel to Gangneung in the North East where Linda is living 
  • Wednesday to Sunday in Gangneung sightseeing and meeting Linda's new friends
  • Sunday night travel back to Seoul
  • Monday 12th Aug Seoul to London and on to Belfast









So thankful that we can all get together for this new Black family Experience.


Right better go and pack now and collect the foreign currency which the bank have finally got for us.  (That's another story of one of those things which shouldn't happen but do happen and are so infuriating.)






           Getting very excited now!!!!


You can find the next post on South Korea HERE