Notes from the trip to and fro Corpus Christi, TX

This past Sunday evening I drove to Corpus Christi for a Kelly Clarkson concert on Monday night. I stayed at the cheapest hotel I could find…which turned out to be one not only right on the beach, but just across the bridge from the venue. whoo hoo.

Here are a few of my scribbled notes from my trip:

1) Southern Texas really, really means it when they say things like “slow to 35Mph for ramp”. In most places that kind of statement means “50Mph is A-Ok”. In southern Texas, they’re not shitting around about it. 35Mph could easily mean 30Mph. These people take their sharp curves very,very seriously.

[No, did not crash, but got a couple of very fast wake ups…o.O].

2) Probably should have bothered to fully read over the directions to my hotel at least once. That way at the end of the long drive (ok semi-long, 4 1/2 hrs)…when it’s all dark and I’m tired and constantly having to flip on the overhead light to see what street is next…I might have actually recognized some of the names I was looking for. The result is that I simply took a more…”creative” route to the hotel. Scenic. I got to see all the dilapitated fallen-down shacks the city has to offer.  Great! (ahem..).

3) Of all the things I brought that I couldn’t possibly need, I forgot my shampoo & conditioner. I think this is pre-destined. When God was setting up my birth he noted somewhere “…forgets hair care products on trips.”. I will always have to buy more.

4) 2nd cheapest hotel room I’ve ever stayed in (first cheapest actually had large freaky bugs…was somewhere in Oklohoma I think). I got the curved shower bar…I don’t understand. Were these maybe invented to appease the serious obese folk? There’s just no other reason to have a shower bar curve outward way out into the bathroom like that.

This amused me:

Great Chair...

…mainly because on the back of the door the “average” prices were listed for that room, I’m assuming for more in-season…this room normally goes for $175/night. Seriously.

I was excited to take a bath because the room I rent at home does not have a bathtub, only a shower. Unfortunately, I discovered the tub plug did not even close to work and I had to get creative about things…

101 Handy Uses for that cheap plastic hotel cup...

Also…

Mmm...tasty

If you cannot tell, that’s the grime and rust covered fridge & microwave. Appetizing for sure.  I did not Open the microwave. I wanted to leave un-traumatized.

The lovely balcony:

great view

Also, sadly, the heat & air didn’t quite work as planned…the auto function was broke. So it had to be manually controlled. It was a cold night out…so basically I had to get up, turn the heat On….go to sleep…get up a little bit later boiling up because the heat was of course still going…turn it Off…get up a little bit later because the room held no heat and was now freezing again…. The blanket provided on the bed was surprisingly thin. I’m quite used to hotel beds having way thick blankets on them. The bed…

5) I have found the western world’s Least uncomfortable bed! It turns out to be room #206 at a beach hotel, which I will be kind (or unkind?) in not stating the name of here. My mattress at home is 9 years old and long past it’s comfort zone. This has hampered my already nasty sleep disorder. The mattress at this hotel, while not only being rock hard, succeeded in being Lumpier than my own 9yr old mattress. I was impressed by this. Not comfortable, but impressed.

6) Me to my brain: “Remind me not to stay in the cheapest hotel possible anymore.”. My brain responds by instead reminding me I’m poor. I become bitter at my brain for this…

7) Hotel door security has become unnecessarily complicated. I think the designers have purposefully started with the idea of “Ok…what can you not possibly do with your hands half full?” and then proceed to make you do it.

8 ) “War is a series of catastrophes that results in a victory.” – Georges Clemenceau.

Why is this on my pizza page in the yellow pages? WAR? Damn…pizza competition must be rough in these parts.   o.O

[I tried to take a picture of that but it was among the Walgreens photo processing casualties. Unsalvageable].

To note…I looked up several things in the yellow pages during my stay there an never found another quote anywhere. Just the pizza page war quote. . .

9) I have firmly decided that all hotels need to come with back massaging chairs. After your long drive, long flight, long bus ride whateva… that is so needed. I don’t even care if it’s a cheap beads thing stuck on the back of a decent chair. Back massage!

10) $3/room…I stopped and talked briefly with the housekeeper. I totally slept through her knocking, had forgotten completely about the “do not enter” tag, so tracked her down the way for a towel (and to apologize for sleeping through her visit and forgetting the door thingy…). She stated they only pay her $3 per room cleaned, not a flat rate or wage or anything (she is contract, so they can get away with more). She said “it’s worse than Mexico!”. She was so nice and friendly, and she gave me extra towels and plastic cups. She said they tell her not to give out so many cups but “people use them! People need them!” and I heartily agreed (having used one of my two cups to stop up the bathtub drain). I told her to mark my room as cleaned…as, after all, I am a customer serviced! I got the towels I needed for my second day of stay. She also stopped by at the end of her route to pick up my wet towels. I left her a big Thank You note on the bed when I left. Someone ought to thank her. Be kind to your housekeeping – please keep in mind that while *you* pay unreasonable amounts (or whoever is paying for you) for a room, and the hotel makes insane money – that most often does not trickle down to the people who actually have to do the dirtiest work.

11) I found a magic flute! It’s cemented into the ground. I was walking back from the beach, standing at a road crossing (ok beach was 1 block away) and a breeze blew and I heard the loveliest music. Wonderful short symphony of pipe instrument playing. I looked behind me and smiled big (and laughed):

The Magic Flute!

If I hadn’t been insufficiently dressed for the occasion, I totally would have stood there waiting for the breezes and put my fingers over various holes. The “One Way” sign actually played quite a nice tune. LOL It was a pleasant surprize. I like it when things like that happen.

After the Kelly Clarkson concert I walked to the beach and stood at midnight by the crashing waves. It was beautiful (cold…but beautiful). On my way back I desperately tried to take a photo of a sign that made me laugh, but alas…the photo did not come out.

Some of the letters on the nearby Budget Inn hotel sign had burnt out (like the “Bud” part…) so the sign just said in bold red letters: “Get In” !! which I thought was funny.

Not much to note on the trip back except before I left Corpus I stopped at a Valero “Stripes” station to get gas and the guy inside tried to sell me something. He said he’d `make me a Deal‘ and if I bought the $1 item and he had my name written down on the back of this (nearby stack of lotto cards) then he’d buy another $5 of it and I’d get the whole lot. If not, I’d just get the 1. I politely declined. My brain of course is shouting “How stupid do you think I am?” and was sad to realize that trick probably works on alot of  people. Yeah…right…he’s going to just magically have my name written down on something in his store, when I’ve just wandered in for a moment to buy gas and no name even given (used cash). LOL.

I am happy to report that, like me, my car enjoys Highway miles much much more than the City.

The Room

I may yet post about the actual concert and VIP stuff, but for now I will leave you with this:

Kelly Clarkson in Corpus Christi 2009


KC in Corpus encore outfit


I should proabaly also note that due to the wonderful Anti-Bed and the manual heating and air by the time I actually got to meet Kelly I was so so tired. Oh and in pain! I had, in the line, somehow broken my pinky nail way down low and it stung badly. And we were quite rushed as it was between the pre-show and her jumping on stage,  so I rushed through it as I didn’t want to be holding her up from her actual concert (and there was quite a line of us)!

Consequently, I confused her and she seemed to think I didn’t want to meet her. Whoop. She seemed really confused and I later felt bad I was in such a hurry (and so so tired for it!). Did not mean to be rude and if that situation comes up again by gods I’ll be sure to rent a better room and get sleep first. doh

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2 Responses to “Notes from the trip to and fro Corpus Christi, TX”

  1. Enjoyed your story! I’ve stayed in some hotels like that… and some campgrounds that were even worse… :-) Probably my (least) favorite was the Swank Motel in OKC. Don’t ever stay there. Unless it’s raining cats and dogs and you’re traveling by bicycle.

    Just wanted to let you know that the price posted on a hotel door is not the average, but the maximum they’re allowed to charge for the room, because it’s what they’ve paid tax on. Basically, if that number is ever lower than what you paid, you’re supposed to report them to the state department of revenue and they’ll get a stiff fine. I learned that when I was briefly considering going into the business; before that, like you, I thought it was the usual price and was surprised that I always got such a deal!

  2. Ben!! :’)
    The “maximum” price was actually listed as $250. For some reason it listed “going rate” and then “maximum rate” on this little sign. The 2-person rates were even more obscene ($350). Dwarfed my little $45 which we’ve already decided is definitely not a deal for that room LOL. The bed and the heat that kept me from sleep (and thus meeting Kelly awake…) were just so horrible.

    I’m sure those are summer beach rates, but even in winter Corpus still is a tourist town. I desperately wanted to go to the Texas State Aquarium which was right down the road from me…because I’ve never yet been to an Aquarium…and there was a Museum of Science & History right across the bridge…but I was so damned tired from lack of any sleep that I just couldn’t do it. All I could do was drive home and crash into my bed.

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