Friday, 15 June 2007

Been Here Before.

If some one asks you address I am sure you wouldn't reply number 23. Or number 9 or 207 or some such number. You would continue with the name of the street at least and then go on to the area of the town and then the name of the town or city.( OK George, if you are reading this, I expect you'd just say 1600). So why do people who come on holiday to Torquay only remember the name of their hotel, and then not even accurately. They seem to think that their hotel is so big and important that every bus driver will know exactly where it is. OK if you are staying at the Grand or the Belgrave or the Livermead Cliff or Livermead House Hotels, we drive past them every day 2 or 3 times a day, we know where they are. But the other 854 hotels in Torquay are not in the data bank known as my memory. Street names, now some of them I know and help is just a radio call away even if I don't.

Yesterday, once again, the desperate question was asked," Do you know where the XYZ Hotel is?" I should add that wasn't the name of the hotel. If there was a hotel called XYZ in Torquay I expect I would know where it was. I use XYZ because the three people who asked where their hotel was couldn't even agree on it's name let alone where it was. "Name of the street it's on?" I asked. I may as well have asked them to explain the complete works of Ludwig Wittgenstein in 3 short sentences without drawing breath. We finally arrived at a description of a road which led me to believe they had come down Belgrave Road. It's at right angles to the sea, there is a park on the left, the return bus fare to town was £1.05, there was a footbridge over the main road. They had gone past Belgrave Road and were at The Grand Hotel, only one stop too far. I told them to cross the road and catch a bus back, "Tell the driver you missed your stop and you want Belgrave Road. He will take you back for free." ( We have so many tourist who don't recognise their stop when they see it and end up too far down the road that we always take them back. All part of the service.)

But they wouldn't have it. They were willing to pay to continue further along the road even though there are only 4 hotels in the next mile and a half down the road. Believe me, I'm a bus driver. I know these things. I refused to take them, again pointing them in the direction of Belgrave Road. Finally I had to go, there were 50 on the bus who wanted to get somewhere, anywhere so long as it wasn't here.

I hope they found their hotel before the restaurant closed for the night. Anyway if you are going away on holiday please write down the name and address of your hotel on a luggage label and pin it to you jacket like all those evacuated children during the war. It will save me feeling guilty as I drive away leaving you stranded at the side of the road without a hope of ever finding your hotel ever again. Not to mention your luggage, an evening meal and a bed for the night.

Have a nice holiday.


Steve said...

Whenever we stay in a hotel I always grab a business card from the front desk and stick it in my wallet.

If it's in a foreign country the address will usually be in english and the local language, so all you have to do is show it to a local and they can help you.

Anonymous said...

Aussie says.. how many hotels do you really have in Torquay?