Tuesday, December 18, 2007

My Limo and Paparazzi Life (almost)

With a mad dash pre-holiday trip to Phoenix this week, I found myself unexpectedly indulging in first class accommodations. First stop, I slid into the driver's seat of my rented Infiniti and barreled down the road as if it were all mine. I should have known at that point it was a sign of things to come. After a spin through the site and a few short meetings, I made my way to the new Renaissance Hotel which opened a few months ago just a mile from my project (so long nasty Courtyard!). Since my old summer stand-by the JW Marriott Camelback Inn is way too pricey these days, I have managed to find a suitable substitute.

As I checked in, my Marriott Rewards Gold Elite status finally paid off! I was escorted to the concierge floor to my complimentary upgraded one bedroom suite. Uh, this dog was bad-A! It had floor to ceiling/wall to wall windows 10' high on the 10th floor. Who's your daddy? It was massive and covered in modern decor. I wondered if I was the first to inhabit? Doubtful, but in my head they were saving it for me. Anyway, after basking in the glow of the dual plasma screens and admiring the gi-normous bed awaiting my slumber, I had to check out the 10th floor lounge. I was greeted by a properly suited host offering snacks, newspapers, drinks, and an outdoor deck overlooking the spa courtyard. It was better than the Admiral's Club! Amazed and overcome with a sense of celebrity jackassery, I felt a cocktail was in order.

I made my way downstairs to the main lounge and perched with my trusty laptop up to the bar. The Vikings game was playing and I typed feverishly away on my little Dell sipping my winter drink of choice, Maker's and Diet Coke. I couldn't help it. The power, it was overwhelming, I felt like I needed to seek out Paris to hang with. At one point, after scarfing down a whole wheat chicken quesadilla with some kind of fancy cheese, I reached past cocktail number two and grabbed a glass of water. I swallowed a large gulp to put out the jalapeno fire in my mouth. Then, the celebrity attitude managed to manifest itself outside of my head.

"Could you please replace this with a Pellegrino?" I asked politely but quickly returning to my keyboard unaware of what I had just uttered. Wait a minute...did I just say what I think I said? What the hell have I become? Who is this guy? I blame the car and the suite. The power of celebrity is just too much for me to handle...so tonight I ground myself in proper fashion once again by herding onto Southwest to fly back to Arkansas. Ah, back to my humble life! So becomes the simple moral of the week: elite status need not affect your head...I should know, I unconsciously ordered a sparkling water when I despise it! Cheers my friends, I must go, the camera flashes are just too much to bare!

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