In Punta Cana, when they let us know that there was no way we were going to make it through customs in time for our connecting flight, they promised us a hotel room and a cab. We got to Miami, made it through customs and finally got to a ticketing counter to collect our hotel room. They shook their heads at our naivetÃ©.
We received the usual “Distress Voucher” and headed out to the shuttle area. Meanwhile, I looked up Airport Regency Hotel in Miami on Yelp.com to see what we were getting into. I read 4 or 5 reviews and rapidly decided it would be worth the extra money to do anything other than spend the night at this hotel. Unfortunately every hotel we called was completely booked. So, after waiting for 30 minutes, we resigned ourselves to getting on the Regency shuttle when it showed up. Here’s what I will be copying and pasting into my Yelp review when I get a chance:
It didn’t look so bad on the outside, nor in the lobby, but the room immediately confirmed my gut instinct. The lights were aging compact fluorescents; the ones with the sickly green cast to them. That didn’t help the rest of the room look better, from the torn comforter spilling its inner contents to the janky little tv that I doubt would have worked if we had tried. The smell of vomit pervaded the sleeping area, and the smell of urine was less than pleasant in the bathroom.
Pulling back the ragged top layer of the bed revealed a stained second cover with somebody else’s hair on it. Yes, that kind of hair. I immediately began to itch, which may have been psychosomatic, but my wife and I agreed that this may not have been a step up from sleeping on an airport bench after all. The fact that we really only had four hours until we headed back to the airport made it somewhat more bearable, and I reluctantly slid between what appeared to be recently washed sheets.
I slept hard, and only woke up once due to the sound of loud music from below and airplanes from above. I will give them this: after a week in a Dominican Republic hotel room with only one grounded outlet and one two-prong outlet, the electrical situation was at least up to code. All of my devices were charged in the morning, for which I am grateful. See? I always find something nice to say.
The happy ending to the story is that the shuttle driver was friendly in the morning (4 a.m.) and I didn’t get into any swearing matches with the surly ticket counter folk back at the airport. We’re on a plane right now, headed for Dallas, Texas. I don’t know why we’re going to Texas, but we will supposedly be back to our home in the waist-deep snow by this afternoon. Four more hours in the air and two on the ground, and then we can relax… and sleep. Then–based on what I’ve heard–shovel.
I really do hate traveling.