While I’ve traveled alone a few times now, and greatly enjoyed my solo wanderings, my typical style is to stay in a hostel, which ends up being a fairly easy social environment, or to eventually meet up with a roommate at my hotel. Tonight is actually the first night I have stayed in a hotel alone (DS is meeting with me tomorrow, for those of you who were wondering), and it is actually a little odd. During the day, I don’t notice. However, when I returned to my far-too-opulent-for-little-ol-me room at around 8:30 tonight, I found myself wondering what I was going to do to occupy myself for the rest of the evening. While I have gotten past the problems of dining alone, I am not yet at the stage to venture into the Seattle nightlife alone. So, I struck a compromise, and here I am, in a dead empty hotel lounge, writing and chugging a glass of Riesling (chugging because it turns out the lounge is only open for 10 more minutes-- something that would have been good to know before ordering).
I was actually hesitant to venture to the lounge on my own. Visions of 60-year old business men drinking martinis and sidling up to me popped into my head—hence why I brought my computer as a date. If pre-occupation (or blogging!) doesn’t scare ‘em off, nothing will.
But what does one write about whilst sucking back white wine and trying to look very intellectually preoccupied?
How about creepy customs workers?
CCW (creepy customs worker): So why are you going to Seattle?
PP: I’m visiting a friend.
CCW: Why are you staying in a hotel then?
PP: She’s coming up from California, and we decided to meet in Seattle.
CCW: Why do you have a friend from California anyways?
PP: (thinking “Answering that I know her through my blog and have never actually met her in person is probably not the right answer right now”) I’m a graduate student, so I met her at a conference.”
CCW: What do you study?
PP: I’m a PhD student in psychology.
CCW: That’s funny. You don’t seem like someone who would try to get into another person’s head.
PP: (thinking “Wow. Nice cliché. And what does that even mean that I don’t look like I try to invade other people’s brains?”) Haha. That’s actually probably to my advantage.
*insert part where he inquires about how long I’ve been in school, etc*
CCW: I don’t really understand. Why is she coming all the way up here and you all the way down here just for a visit?
PP: She had some air miles and has some other friends in the area, and I just decided to hop down for the weekend, since I live so close.
CCW: Can I see your return ticket?... So you’re just here for two days? Is this a romantic rendezvouz or something?
PP: (holding back laughter. Did he really just suggest that DS and I are lesbian lovers?! And how exactly is this relevant information at all?) *flustered* Oh no! We’re just friends!
After prolonging the inquisition a little more, he finally decides to let me go.
And the United States is saved from the terror of importing a craved Canadian lesbian to seduce one of their own.
Other highlights of the day?
#1- The most hilarious and offside gift ever for the Duke, which includes the most brilliant quote of the day ever. Unfortunately, that sneaky guy may be reading this, so I have to hold off on any further description.
#2- The most diet ignoring dinner on the planet (okay, I’m not actually on a formal diet, just trying to focus on eating healthy) by the waterfront—clam strips, fries, super yummy clam chowder and American iced tea (I forgot again that their iced tea is different—and substantially grosser—than the Canadian version).
The most entertaining part of this dinner was that there were masses of seagulls swooping along the perimeter of the patio—but it was almost as though there was an invisible electric fence, because unlike in my city, they remain on the water side of the fence. However, these were some talented seagulls, as they could catch French fries from mid air with incredible accuracy. And the funniest sight ever? A man in leather chaps, holding out a French fry over the water with incredible dedication and desperation, hoping for a little avian contact.
#3- As I made my way to the waterfront, I decided to walk down a random set of stairs. Before I made my first step, I saw two fellows sitting about halfway down, apparently sharing a bottle of something other than root beer. My first inclination was to look for another path. However, I have this little internal rule stating that it is good to challenge myself and go against my impulses every so often. So I walked down the stairs.
And, of course, as I walked by these two gentleman, who turned out to be around my age, they stopped me—apparently because they liked my jacket??
So I talked to them a little. They told me they’ve started up a rap label, and showed me their tattoos of the rap label’s name. One started telling me how he’s a chef, and wants to cook me a dinner while I’m in town, and how I should go to a baseball game with them.
I told them I was going to meet a friend.
They told me we should hang out tomorrow, and wanted my number.
(As a side note, I have a whole theory about how women in our society have no skills in telling men they aren’t interested. We feel like we can’t say no or “don’t talk to me”, because we are automatically branded as bitches, so we have to play along, even when we aren’t the slightest bit interested. This was maximized in my case because I was all alone in this city on this random staircase, and they were actually quite nice to me—it’s much easier when they are super pervy.)
Rather than just saying no (I know, I know), I told them I will take their numbers instead. As I was taking down their number, one of the guys said he would type it in. So I handed him my phone, at which point he called his phone using my phone, so that he'd have my number.
Strike one against being indirect.
Side note—I went to pay after chugging that glass, and they said that I could stay while they closed up, and offered me more wine.
Now, two glasses of wine later, I’m more than happy to be buzzed and watching What Not to Wear in my hotel room.