Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Trapped in a 5-Star Hotel

Special note to Cake Goddess: I don't think I had what you had, so please don't feel guilty! My flu symptoms were not like yours at all!

I spent three of the last 6 days trapped in a 5-star hotel room in Vegas. I was staying at the brand new Palazzo (connected to the Venetian). My company was paying mega-bucks for me to be here and train people. And I'm good at that. Except when I can't do it because I'm sick, as was this case. After two productive days, I came down with the flu and I was leveled.

Now I've been known to push through illness in the past, and I would have this time, had I been able. But my body sent a clear no-go to that. I was light-headed and feverish. I couldn't have walked to the conference facility, let alone greeted up to 3,000 people. So I stayed in my luxurious hotel suite (it's an all-suite facility), slept and watched TV on one of the three flat-screens in the room. It doesn't sound too bad, except that I desperately wanted to be home. I would have made a bee-line home if I had felt better. But I couldn't and so I didn't.

Instead, I slept and slept and fought with guilt over not being there with my team. The team was kind and caring and my co-worker Connie took a special risk to visit me. (May she stay well.) And the kindness of a stranger touched me deeply. I ordered a bowl of soup and toast ($33 with room service and taxes!), and the woman who brought it noticed I was ill. She promptly ordered up a humidifier for me, and that made all the difference! The tiger raging in my throat calmed and my lips stopped cracking. I wept because I was so touched that she cared enough to help me.

Fortunately, I started feeling better yesterday and today felt well enough to make the trip home, as scheduled.

What I've learned is this:
* There's no place like home when one is sick
* Sometimes we can't do what we plan, even when our heart is in it
* The kindness of strangers has amazing healing powers


Anonymous said...

Wow. Sorry to hear that you have been sick! I have wondered where you have been these past few days. Welcome back to blogland. I am glad you are feeling better.

mep said...

I am so happy to hear you are on the mend and back at home. I missed your posts. I love that you are the kind of person who can learn lessons while being very sick in a hotel room. Take care of yourself!

Angela McRae said...

OK, so I wanna know ... what does $33 soup taste like? (And seriously: glad you're back. I was starting to worry! Who do you call in blogland when someone disappears???)

Steph said...

Thank you to my blog friends who noticed my absence! :-)

$33 soup tasted pretty good - it was homemade noodle soup. But $33 -come on!

Marmie said...

Sorry to hear about your terrible experience and welcome back.

artandtea said...

Feel better, Steph.

Allison said...

Oh man, what a yucky thing the flu is. I hope you're home and cozy and feeling better now!

Anonymous said...

So glad you made it home safely & sure hope you're feeling lots better!
I have an idea for your house ~ I'll send you an email.

Anonymous said...

there's no place like home. and being sick is a normal part of life. you've given lots of great service to your company, it is ok to not always be 100%