The sprinkler incident
It all began so innocently. I did some washing in my hotel and hung my clothes all around the room on armrests, lampshades and vertical surfaces. When I got to my last pair of underpants, I had exhausted every available surface, so I had the clever idea of putting them on a hanger and hooking it onto a fire sprinkler in the ceiling. Next morning, the birds were chirping, the sun was shining, all of my clothes were clean and dry and I reached up to retrieve the hanger from the sprinkler. That’s when it happened.
The sprinkler started spraying all over my well-rested body, my clean clothes and indeed the whole room. The nozzle was perfectly designed to spray every corner of the room. It wasn’t fresh, clean water either because it contained some sort of fire retardant and tasted dreadful. This was no Gene Kelly moment. I called the front desk to alert them, then started dashing about wildly to move my stuff into the sheltered bathroom. A few minutes later, the front desk lady came up to have a look – apparently to check if I was telling the truth. I suggested she find a way to shut off the water, rather than join me under the torrent.
A few minutes later, the water pressure more than doubled and the siren started sounding. My stomach dropped as I imagined that the whole hotel had just started moistening swiftly. The freezing lagoon in my room was growing past my ankles so I began shifting all of my stuff outside, just in time to watch the water start flowing down the hallway and under peoples’ doors.
Finally, the staff figured out how shut off the water for the whole property and the panic subsided. People started poking their heads out of the rooms, wondering why they couldn’t have their morning shower. There I was, standing in my shorts, dripping with smelly water, and looking quite sheepish. While the hotel staff managed the aftermath, they let me into another room to recover my composure and eventually have a shower. They treated me well but I felt so bad that I haven’t returned to that hotel since. It was like a hot date where you fart loudly and then refuse to meet her again.
Americans say the darndest things:
– Eating utensils are often called silverware, even if they’re made of plastic.