Accommodation Anarchy - Part 2

Trip Start Jun 01, 2002
Trip End Sep 11, 2007

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Flag of Portugal  ,
Thursday, September 1, 2005

24 hours post the festival we are on the move again, tomato still present in my ears and other places not to mention!! This time to Seville for a night and then onto Lisbon, Portugal. At this stage I am not really sure why we agreed to fly into Barcelona and then out of Lisbon. Sounded like a good plan at the start.

Out of the 50 train carriages that are attached to this train, we end up with the one with broken air-conditioning. Surprise frick'n Surprise. But it does not matter, we are on the way to Seville. Only a mere 7 hours away.

Ahhh Seville, had heard great things about her (assuming it was a her) and she shone through with flying colours. Little winding streets full bars, great tapas and beautiful boutique shops. The people were so friendly and if only it was not 43 degrees it would have been perfect.

Up early the next day, Katie and I put our tourists caps back on again and stumble across some great places. As the day came to an end we glimpsed a sign telling us to see a local flamingo show!? What a great way to end a great day. What worked out the best was it would be finished just before our midnight bus departed.

I had to admit, my expectations of the show was going to be very "touristy" but it was a well welcomed surprise when we walked in, to find the small "cabaret" type room full of local Spaniards. And the show - was just amazing, full of passion and power and music. All the whirling, shoe tapping and sweat on the stage made my eyes blurry - could have done with the 2 jugs of Sangria already consumed.

As the show ended and everyone cheered we worked our way to the bus station and after some minor worry about missing the bus due to stopping for that last jug of Sangria - we were off to Portugal, pissed but full of smiles- YEAH!

And that is where the happiness ended!

As the Sangria wore off and the hang-over kicked in, the air-conditioning on the bus decided to break down and with the space between each seat the size of a needle eye - the trip was becoming quite painful. At 5am the only saviour was ice-cream from a petrol station.

I would actually write more about the bus journey, but I believe that my brain has taken on its self to remove that memory.

6am - we arrive at the bus station and after successfully tracking down the metro we find it is not yet open! Now we are both at our ends-limit and as quickly as you can say "I just want some sleep" - we are in a cab and on our way to our pre-booked accommodation. Oh yes, I can feel the comfort of that pillow on my dear head! Ahhhh

Now bear with me here this could drag out for a while... Also I have taken the liberty of translating this conversation from Portuguese to English - just in case you are not as fluent in languages as I am...

Time: 6:23am (Very Dark Outside)
Us: [Knocking on the Hotel Door]
Receptionist At Hotel: [Opens the door with a nice Portuguese smile]

Us: "Hello, we have a reservation under the name Katie"

Her: "Ah yes, here it is... check in is at 2pm... you can leave your bags in the room around the cor...."

Us: "Sorry? Can we just check in now? Is there anyone in the room?

Her: "No, check in is at 2pm .... Umm no there is not anyone in the room... you could buy another night for these for hours... "

Us: "Well why don't you let us have the room now, since it is 6am and you are not going to sell the room.... What about some customer service .. Blah blah..."

OK - you can see where this conversation was going - nowhere. Now you have to imagine Katie and I are standing there smelling and looking very ordinary - killer hangovers from that stupid Sangria and this woman will not let us check into a room that we have already paid for!!

So this conversation goes back and forth for a while, at one stage I ask her to call her manager. She picks up the phone and speaks Portuguese to someone (could be a friend for all I know) and still the answer is NO. Katie and I meander our way to the luggage room and find that it is a miniature lounge room - couch, TV and magazines.

After 5mins of just about bursting into a fierce ranging maniac, I decide to just pay for another night. It is only money! As she punches into her keyboard she then has the audacity to tell me that the price of the room for 8 hours is almost double what we are paying already!!

I do believe there was steam coming from my head!! Now we are two Maniac Tired People (known as MTP) - ranting and raving like lunatics. Before we actually murder the girl I come up with a cunning plan. Attempting to drag Katie from the other side of the counter (and remove the knife from her hand) we head back to the "luggage room" where I explain my little plan...

"If they are not going to GIVE us room, we will MAKE one!!"

And with that, we are off:
- Coffee table and magazines are moved to the wall
- TV is moved into the corner
- All the seating cushions from the couch are put on the floor.
- Old smelly clothes are bunched up to create a make-shift pillow

And here is the best...... The room has a lock that can only be 'unlocked' from the inside!

7:23am - Asleep!

10:15am - Urgent Rattle at the door. The door is still locked. Ha Ha - Who's the
boss now!!

11:15am - Dying for the toilet I sneak out. As I am coming back to the room in
front of me is a somewhat irate Hotel Manager.

I am not going to bore you again with the heated conversation [was very similar to the previous one]. But as we finish cleaning up the room and ensuring that it is as exactly as we found it - the manager walks past the luggage room and sticks his head in.

Time 11:26am
Him: "Oh you can check in now...."
Us: "You are kidding??"
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