It's been a while since I've done a late-night drive. It was a challenging one, mainly due to the fact that the Indy drive exhausted about 22 hours worth of iTunes material. Considering that I have just over twelve days' worth of audio on my computer, it's hard to believe that I had to grab West Wing DVDs to listen to on the drive. Fortunately, I have wi-fi in my room, so I've been able to pull material from the ether in the form of podcasts and other assorted downloads, so I'm covered for the drive home.
I arrived at the hotel at about 2 a.m. Friday morning. They gave me a whirlpool suite because the other rooms were sold out. This means that there is an entire room that I don't need. I can't invite my brother and his girlfriend to hang out, because it's a non-smoking room and my brother smokes like one of those smokestacks from the early days of the Industrial Revolution. Last night, I sat in the other room and watched television for a half-hour just to be able to say I used it.
I was picked up Friday morning for radio at 7:30. Unlike other times when you're picked up by the club manager, or a door guy or this week's MC, they sent a limo service. It wasn't a stretch limo or anything -- it was a town car, but still, I had a driver. Weird. I tipped him $5, and agonized about whether it was enough, until my brother pointed out to me later that there are probably a lot of times where he doesn't get any tip at all.
The hotel is across the street from the Grand Avenue mall in downtown Milwaukee, so I went to the food court for dinner last night. The people working the counter at the Chinese place were literally calling people over, pushing samples like carnival barkers, but with a charming accent instead of a spooky rasp. I tried the barbequed chicken and the orange chicken and realized there was no way I was not having Chinese by this point. It was very satisfying. They were still harranguing people to try their food as I left. I caught sight of the guy at the counter of the Greek place when I walked by. He looked positively miserable because the Chinese folks were getting all the customers before they even got to his place. I wanted to go up to him and say, "dude -- gyro meat cuts up just fine into small pieces. Fight fire with fire." On the other hand, maybe he usually does give out samples, but just ran out of toothpicks.
After dinner, my original plan was to get a bottle of wine and drink it while sitting in the whirlpool, but that just seemed a little too Will and Grace, so I picked up a small bottle of vodka and some orange juice and drank screwdrivers while sitting in the whirlpool. Why I thought the wine was the faggy part, I don't know.
The problem with solo time in whirlpools is that when you're sitting in one, that's pretty much all you're doing. It faced away from the television, and the motor was too noisy for me to watch a DVD or play music from my laptop (unless I used headphones, but I wasn't going to risk having the laptop that close to churning water). It was relaxing, but there was an undercurrent (no pun intended) of grim obligation, too.
I was asleep by 10 p.m., which may be the earliest I've gone to sleep in, literally, years (perhaps decades). Woke up at 7:30 this morning, and now, here I sit, typing away on my bed. I've got one of those lap-tables with the cusion on the bottom. One would think this would be comfortable, but it's not. I think I'll be returning to the desk once I'm done with this. However, like the whirlpool, I had to try it out.
Who knew unsolicited luxury could be such a challenge?