Stories from my daily life as a motel manager, being a wife and the Mama of 6 cats.
I've recently been doing some research on "mom & pop" and "roadside" motels. I've become fascinated...well, ok, I've become obsessed. Motels like ours are apparently a dying breed. Not only are small motels being out gunned by bigger, chain hotels, but there's an unwavering dark cloud that hangs above them all...a bad reputation. Don't get me wrong, when I started my adventure in the hospitality business as the housekeeper here 7 years ago, this place needed some cleaning up, some discipline and lots of tender loving care. Today, as the resident manager, I look around at our property and feel proud at what this sweet little motel has become. |
I've seen, heard and recently read horror stories of drugs, crime, and general disorder occurring at establishments like this. People talk of dirty rooms, unkempt properties and ignored maintenance issues. They talk of the wife abusers, the drug dealers and the women of ill repute. And, I was shocked and horrified when I read of motel employees spying on, taking advantage of and sometimes assaulting the very people from which they earn a living. And so, as managers or owners, we must deal with the stigma of becoming a book being judged by it's cover. When it comes to choosing a hotel or motel, "mom & pops" are often overlooked or simply not considered due to aesthetic appeal. We were built in the 50s & 60s and some of us are showing our age...a wrinkle here, a grey hair there and at times a bum knee. Compared to the eye catching designs and modern architecture of newer hotels, we often lose out simply due to curb appeal.
Hey, I get it...we all like something new and shiny. But me, I prefer a comfortable pair of faded jeans purchased at my local thrift store. Now, please keep in mind that just because someone says that "old mom & pop motel", it doesn't have to mean dingy, dirty and the location of the next "Oh-No-They-Didn't" reality show. It, could simply mean, by every definition of the word...home.
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