Monday, March 13, 2006

An Open Letter to People Who Run Ostensibly Luxurious Hotels

Dear People,

I have a few suggestions for you:

1. Go to the little market about 200 yards away from your hotel.

2. Purchase a box of Lipton.

3. Bring it back to the kitchen.

4. Put it on a shelf.

5. Instruct your staff that when somebody asks at breakfast whether you have "Plain, regular black tea," they should not just smile, nod, and then ask, "Earl Grey?" Sure, Earl Grey is regular black tea--but INFUSED WITH OIL OF BERGAMOT. It's a little like my asking, "Do you have regular, plain coffee?" and them smiling and nodding and asking, "Regular with Irish cream essence?" Instead, they should go to that shelf in the kitchen, dunk a bag of Lipton in boiling water, bring it out, and say, "Of course we have regular tea. AND here is some cream for it, in case you prefer that to lemon."

Nice touch with the turndown service, though.

You didn't really expect me to return to posting and leap right in with a happy one, now did you? Well, now that that's out of the way, I can tell you that, in spite of the lack of regular tea, I really did have a wonderful time on my vacation. It was just what I needed.

C.S. is right about the food in southern California--it was fresh and delicious virtually everywhere we went. There was tremendous emphasis on organic ingredients. The local wines are terrific. It only rained a little. My new red shoes looked cute. The coastline was gorgeous. I didn't do laundry for SEVEN DAYS. Just saying that sends chills down my spine, but that could be because the "SEVEN DAYS" thing reminds me of The Ring.

It may take me some time to catch up this week, but I am very much looking forward to reading up on everyone's writing and seeing what I missed.

Just as soon as I finish my tea.


Anonymous TB said...

Welcome Back, Arabella!

9:26 AM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...

I missed you.

10:52 AM  
Blogger Arabella said...

Awww, thanks, ladies! I missed you, too!

10:54 AM  
Blogger Mignon said...

I had this day marked on my calendar, in honor of your return. And, hark, the day has come! I can't wait to hear more juicy details...

Turndown service with chocolates, by chance?

11:26 AM  
Blogger ptg said...

Glad you are back. I heard of a lady who went to California and was never seen again.

2:37 PM  
Blogger DebbieDoesLife said...

You WILL tell more about your vakay? Right?

4:22 PM  
Blogger Arabella said...

Mignon--Chocolate MINTS!!! My favorite.

PTG--Good thing I'm not a lady!

Debbie--Are you kidding??? I couldn't possibly have THAT many restaurant meals in one week and only talk about tea.

5:06 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

I totally agree with you about the food in So. California. Best seafood I've ever had, ever.

You would think that any hotel kitchen would have Lipton or some other kind of black tea. You can't be the first person to ever ask for it.

9:13 PM  
Blogger Jess Riley said...

Welcome back! Do we get to see pictures? :)

9:29 PM  
Blogger Brooke said...

Preaching to the choir in this home of a British, Tea-Drinking Husband. He would have been equally incensed.

10:47 PM  
Blogger IzzyMom said...

Welcome back! Hope you had a fantastic vacation. And thanks for the tea lesson, I love Earl Grey but had no idea about the bergamot. Veddy interesting!

11:01 PM  
Blogger Ditsy Chick said...

Welcome back, thank for the update on cute shoes. I was inspired by you and went to get a pair and ended up with 4 pairs. I am taking 2 back, I doesn't fit and 1 hurts my foot.

Can't wait to hear more.

11:45 PM  
Blogger wordgirl said...

We missed you. I had no idea about Earl Grey and Oil of Bergamot. None whatsoever.

9:49 AM  
Anonymous V-Grrrl said...

Tea drinkers of the world, UNITE.

I am so with you on this issue. The biggest insult is when you ask for tea and they offer you herbal!

And I am so SICK of having warm (not boiling) water and a teabag brought to the table so that I can prepare the tea myself, as if this is impossible for professional restaurant personnel to do in the kitchen. Of course, they never bring a tea bag caddy for the teabag to the table and I refuse to put it on my PLATE or perch it like a piece of trash on my saucer (assuming I have a saucer, big ASSUMPTION). When I'm really irked, I drop the wet teabag straight on the table. And they expect me to reuse the teabag if I want a second cup. Hello, that's not happening!

Imagine if you ordered coffee and they delivered ground beans and lukewarm water.

Arabella, the first American Revolution started over tea, I think the second should as well. We deserve EQUAL rights.

10:14 AM  
Blogger Arabella said...

Well said, V-Grrrl! It's so true! As if the effort of pouring boiling water over a bag of tea in the kitchen --or, worse yet, bringing us something in which to rest our teabags-- would just KILL them.

And if we dare ask for cream instead of lemon, the positions of the planets in orbit gets all out of whack.

6:34 PM  
Blogger Arabella said...

I meant "get."

6:34 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home