My co-worker called and asked me to cover the rest of her shift. Mine started at 11:00, and I only had to arrive a few hours early..
There was a-ton-of hockey-families in the hotel. Kids were running all over the halls, and the parents were drinking cheap beer, and wine in the dining room, and lobby.
I started my shift with looking to see if I had a couple of dollars to get juice from the vending machine. It turned out I had no cash, but I did discover a check that I had no clue I put in my wallet. So, that was cool. A guest asked for more pillows, I got them for him, and he gave me $2.00 Helloooo juice!
I regretted coming in early, within 20 minutes of clocking-in. There were actually two hockey teams. I had no clue who was with which team, because they were all mingling together. Knowing which team was which wasn’t as important to me. What is important to me was getting the chaos under control.
The people in the dining room were not the immediate issue. The kids running through the halls, making all kinds of noise was the biggest issue to take care of. I started walking the halls; telling the kids to stay out of the hallways. Just like every kid who thinks he or she is about to get into trouble, they all started denying being the problem, and it was some other kids making all of the noise. I wasn’t accusing anyone of anything specific. I was just asking them to stay in their rooms.
I could tell it was not going to be an easy night. I saw a woman walking towards the stairway. I asked her if any of the kids were with her. “I don’t know whose kids, these are.” She said. “My kids are behaving in their room.” Her tone was defensive and a bit bitchy.
I made my way back to the lobby, where the parents were having a little party. All of the adults were drinking, and partying like rock stars, in the dining room and none of them were supervising their kids. Good old-fashioned American parenting. I stood right-in-front-of the radio they had on, unplugged it from the wall, and spoke loud-and-clear so they all had my attention. “Pardon my interruption. There are kids running around the hallway disturbing other guests. Can you please make sure your kids are in their rooms and not playing in the hallway?” They all looked at me with the same expression… Who do you think you’re talking to…?
One lady spoke up. “Our kids are in their rooms behaving. It is not our kids.” She said. I looked at them all and responded..
“Our guests have an expectation that they can stay at this hotel, and sleep comfortably and, quietly. The kids in the hallway are disturbing guests.” Another lady somewhere in the group spoke up.
“My kids are not in the halls. You need to talk to the other team parents.” The phone rang at the desk. Someone on the 3rd floor is pissed off about all of the noise.
“I want you to do something about this right now!” The gentleman ordered.
“Yes, I am trying to get a handle on the situation right now.” I said.
“Well, this has been going on for several hours and nobody has done a thing yet.”He said.
“Okay, sir I do understand. I am trying to sort this whole thing out. I will go into the halls and tell everyone to clear the hallways, and stay in their rooms.”
“This is unacceptable. You need to control these people!”
I had a hotel full of assholes, who were disturbing the peace, and assholes who were pissed-off at those other assholes. I hate assholes. “Yes sir, you are right. I am sorry for all of this. I am going to take care of it right now.” I said. He hung up.
I went back through each floor, and told the kids to get out of the hall. They all scattered like roaches as soon as they sensed my presence. A couple of them were setting up little goal nets on either side of the second floor hallway. “You cannot have those out here. Please put them back in your rooms. It is night-time and the hotel and hallways need to be quiet.” I said. One of those bastard kids spoke back to me.
“You can’t tell us what to do. You’re not in charge of us.” My blood pressure went into overdrive. This is why I use condoms. Clearly, I wasn’t going to get the results that I needed, by being polite.
“Okay, kid.” I said. “I know I am not your dad, but this hotel has rules, and you are still breaking those rules. You need to put these things away and get out of the hallway, right now. You are being rude to all of the other guests. This is not a playground. It is a place for people to sleep peacefully, and quietly. Get out of the hallway.” I crossed my arms and waited for a snotty reply. The kids looked at me like I was a bully. They stood there, defiantly staring back. “Alright, this is how it is going to be. Take these goals down or I will.” I grabbed one of the nets with my left hand.
“No!” The kids yelled.
“Quit shouting in the hallway. People are trying to sleep. Now take this stuff and put it away, or I will take it.” The mouthy one, grabbed his net with both hands.
“I ‘m telling my dad.” He said.
“Sweet!” I said. “I’ll tell your dad to get you all under control, or you will all have to leave.” I walked away and went back to the desk.
The parents, were still partying like it’s 1999. I’m pretty sure that was the last time they were young enough to be drunk-assholes, who could get away with being that irresponsible. I received another call from a pissed-off guest.
I went back up to the floor with the issue. As I walked up the stairs, I could hear some voices, but not more than two or three. By the time I arrived to the 3rd floor those people were gone. I walked up and down the hallway, listening for the loudest room. I could hear people, but it wasn’t obvious which room, exactly, it was coming from. I even put my ear to some doors, and it was still difficult to tell. I didn’t want to knock on everyone’s door, just to disturb more people.Slowly, I worked my way back to where I came from, listening carefully as I walked past each door, hoping someone would walk out, revealing the room to me. Not a chance. It drove me crazy, because I could hear people talking, but it was just quiet enough that the sound was not traveling well into the hallway. Clearly the dividing walls are thinner than the doors.
More kids scattered as I walked back down the stairs. “Get out of the hallway, please.” When I returned to my desk, again, the phone was already ringing. I picked it up, just to get yelled at by the same guest again. The doors, suddenly opened up, and a large group of about fifteen people walked in to the building and went to the elevator.
“I told you to take care of this noise!” He shouted.
“Yes, I am doing my best. I do apologize.” I, kinda, hung up the phone. Oops, my bad. Clearly, I needed reinforcements. I called the police. I told them how out-of-control everything was, and they sent a few cops over.
A drunk mom came to my desk. “Why all the drama tonight?” She asked.
“People are disrupting our guests, who want to sleep. I am trying to get things quiet.” I told her.
“Well, it isn’t our kids who are causing all of the trouble.” She informed me, slurring every word.. Nope, it’s all the, asshole, drunk parents, who are not being responsible adult parents. That is the problem.
“It’s all taken care of anyways.” I said. “No worries.”
“What do you mean?” She asked. So, I told her.
“I just got off the phone with the cops. They are on their way to get this place quiet again.” I stared at her face, and watched the reality of the situation settle in. She turned back to the party calling for her husband.
“Hey Bill, we should check on the kids.” She said, as she entered the drunk-parent-zone. I couldn’t hear anything once she got deeper into the crowd.
The police showed up quickly, and I watched some of the parents get wide-eyed. Several of them walked right out of the lobby, and went to grab their kids, right after they heard me tell the officers to go through the building, and get everyone out of the hallways. A few more parents went to find their kids, real quick, after I said that.
After ten minutes, the police officers came back to my desk. “We got people out of the hallways. Hopefully they don’t cause any more trouble tonight.” The one officer said. “We told them to stay in their rooms for the rest of the night. Also, there were a couple of rooms that looked like they were having a party. Rooms 315 and 325. We told them to keep it down.”
“So you didn’t tell them to stop the party?” I asked with disappointment. “They were told to be quiet.” He said.
“I see. I ‘m sure it’s under control now.”
The two cops walked away. As soon as they were off the property, the same pissed off guest called again. “I thought you had this under control! The noise hasn’t stopped!” He shouted. “Do I need to call the police for you?” He said.
“Sir, the police just left. They told me they had the situation under control.” I informed him.
“No way. You did that. I can still hear the party going on” He said.
“Okay, sir.” I was trying to sound sincere. “I will call them back.” He slammed the phone down, and I called the police again.
While I waited for them to return, I went to those two rooms. I pounded on both doors, and I told them to end the party, and leave the hotel.Both times, the person answering the door refused to let me get a view of the inside of the rooms. Obviously, the people in both rooms resisted, and refused to leave.
The same two police officers arrived. They were only gone for about ten minutes. “Third floor.” I said. “Rooms 315 and 325. Please tell them all to leave. Please don’t give them an option. I already told them to go, and they refused, so please, walk them all out.”
They went back up to finish the job. A few moments later, there was a flood of people going through the hallways, heading towards the door. These were not teenagers. These were adults in their 30’s and 40’s, and they were not hockey parents. I watched about 50 people walk out that door. Holy shit! The police officers followed them. They didn’t even talk to me. They just nodded and left.