Friday, June 20, 2008

Posting from Iowa

I TOTALLY tried to post yesterday from the road but it didn't work out. You'll see why as you read below.
I drove yesterday as far as LuVerne, Minnesota with plans to stay in my beloved Cozy Rest Motel. I'd stayed there in the past and it is hilarious. The room I had was aqua...the walls AND the ceiling. The towels said Double Tree on them.
Well, the Cozy Rest was full. So was the Sunrise.
I could NOT face the Super 8 there which is connected to a bar/steakhouse and hosts things like wet t-shirt volley ball contests and shares a parking lot with Pamida.
The night before I had wisely googled LuVerne and programmed the numbers of local hotels in my phone. I called the last hotel. The Hillcrest and she had a room. Yeah! I drove on up. It's about 2 miles off the interstate but that's fine. It's just sort of in a neighborhood. One of those old single story motels where you park right in front of the room.
Seriously. It is FABULOUS in a surreal way. And it fulfills all my frugal and simple criteria.
I go to the office to check in and a woman comes through the door that leads to her private quarters. It's a thinner version of my Gramma Wagner...the infamous Beulah.
There is a sheet of paper taped to the counter that says, "no cooking in the rooms. No frying pans, no hotpots, no crockpots, no waffle irons, no electric woks, no popcorn poppers...." It goes on for a full page.

The first words out of Beulah's mouth after "are you the one who just called?" are "Do you have any pets?"
(check the webpage..."No Pets" is the first thing. Though if you go to the "policies" page you see you CAN have small pets with a fee at the discretion of management).
You can also see pictures of each room on the webpage. I was in 117, though the photos are a bit out of date.
Here are a couple of my room photos. It was GREAT! Clean yet tatty. Servicable, yet just a tiny bit off.

Check out the wear on the arm of that chair and the cool plastic flowers.
And here's the desk chair. I felt like a Jetson!

LOVE the plastic flowers and that lamp...I wanted that lamp.
They fixed the shower floor with duct tape that almost matches the color of the shower stall (which was free standing...not attached to the wall or anything fancy like that).
You can't see it here, but those towels are worn. Though spotlessly clean. Smelled of bleach. They probably started out a dark navy.
This is NOT a cross stitch. It is a FAKE cross stitch made out of some sort of resin affair.
I have never seen anything so beautiful.
The hotel advertises wireless internet. I had my laptop so I busted it out to blog. There is indeed wireless internet, BUT it needed a password which I did not have. I was afraid to go back in the office to ask the mean lady (she asked me if all the other hotels were full before she would rent me a room!). AND by the time I got my nerve up it was after 10pm. If you read the policies page you will notice, or if you are there and read the postings, that from 10pm to 7am is QUIET HOURS and you are to turn your TV down and be respectful of other guests. So, I lost my nerve again and just watched the TV (very quietly).
I must say, it is CLEAN and for $34.88 it is a hell of a deal. I did make guacamole in my room. I hope that doesn't count as cooking because I totally want to stay there again.

You see I did not have time to go to the VALANCE STORE!!! that is part of the hotel. Seriously. They sell valances as well as hotel rooms. Clearly they had custom made valances in the room. One in the bathroom (which is full width of the room across the back with a big window in which is jammed an airconditioning unit....which makes the floor chilly. This combined with the lack of an exhaust fan results in quite a bit of condensation during your shower).
Other cool features that I don't have time to load the photos of tonight:
A fake beam ceiling with accoustic tiles jammed in between the fake beams.
A round thing that makes you think it is the thermostat, but is really just a thermometer.
This line from the webpage describing important features of the room: About 1 mile or closer from local restaurants
And this other line from the features webpage: Winter Plugin's
And this other other line from the features webpage: Cold soda's
(why can't anyone drive an apostrophe these days?)
Honestly, I want to stay here again in one of the other rooms. My fellow residents were nice. One diagnosing the horrifying noise my car was making as "probably a U-joint or a heat shield." I said, "CV joint?" He says, "Yeah." (A U-joint would be in the back center. The noise is clearly in the front driver's side wheel assembly area which would be a CV-joint or steering issue or something like that). Then we opened the hood to look for a heat shield and there isn't one. But you know, he meant well. And it was probably BAD BAD flirting on my part to correct him but if even I know it can't be that part of a car, then this is not a major mechanical genius I'm talking to.
Anyway, just a tiny bit of flood update before I hit the inflat-a-bed.
I'm in Waverly. There has clearly been TONS of cleanup already. Fred and Sher's house still needs lots of cleaning. Amazing amounts of cleaning. I washed walls and baseboards and outlets (yes, outlets...they were not live), and stuff today. Sher will have more jobs for us tomorrow. More cousins and friends coming tomorrow to help.
The drive was fine except for the horrifying grinding noise in the front wheel area. I have a car appointment on Wednesday to get it taken care of.
I'll be here about 10days and may post more Hillcrest photos if I have time.
I'll try to take some flood photos if I can. The caved in foundations are the most impressive right now. Big holes next to houses leading into basements! Fred and Sher's foundation is fine and the basement walls and floors will get yet another power wash from my brother's industrial strength power washer tomorrow. So the smell is clearly not as bad as it was at first.
Good night dear readers.

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