Saturday, February 21, 2009

Hanging in a hotel bar

Have you ever been on a business trip alone? What do you do with yourself at night? Hide in your room where it's safe and order room service. All guilty raise your hands. Hey it's OK, mine is raised too. I hate eating alone. I always feel like a total loser. If I do it I usually dine in the hotel restaurant where I feel less conspicuous among the other single diners. Once in a while to push the envelope, I go to the hotel bar to people watch. I usually bring a book or my laptop to pretend that I do not care that I am alone at night in a strange city. The wait staff always is very attentive if pitying.

On this business trip, I was sitting tucked into a corner of the cave-like lobby bar sipping my Mojito and munching on super-chic whole-wheat tortillas with fancy homemade salsa that at home with would have come from a jar labeled Tostito. I looked up as the bubble of conversation burst at the bar. There was a flurry of activity with a curly haired young man and his apparent girlfriend. Another couple walked over and started talking, pictures were being taken then the curly-haired man and his girl left and the other couple sat back down at the bar. Curious, I surreptitiously watched them. An older couple at a table close to the bar engaged the barflies. Eavesdropping, I heard them query what was going on. Well, surprise, surprise, it was a Spanish celebrity. And, apparently, there had been a basketball star in earlier. I am so utterly hopeless with celebrity recognition. I worked in Manhattan for 11 years for heaven's sake and only saw a celebrity once. I am sure they walked past me regularly but I am unusually oblivious.

Most other people in the bar were completely in the dark literally and figuratively; leaning close caught up in each other, intent on their smart phones texting their friends or pretending to read their messages, chatting in the jewel-toned glow of the lights from the back bar or systematically from getting plastered.

I really need to hang out in bars more often; it is better than TV.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The beauty of facials

I go back and forth on the whole getting a facial thing. I love the idea of them and have had many, but for the money; I always expect to come out looking like a million bucks (or at least $125. plus tip) worth and never do. Mainly because my skin is baby soft when I leave, it's true, but I feel like a total grease ball and they insist on doing a head massage so not only is my face greasy but so is my hair and it is now sticking up to boot. I always go take a shower (again, because, of course, I took one in the morning.) which I'm sure negate the benefits. Sigh. What's a girl to do?

Have you ever had a facial? Let me describe the experience.

I only get them at hotel spas. Some of the hotels have famous spas attached to them like Canyon Ranch, so they know what they are doing. (Having said that, my first facial was a gift certificate to Saks in New York from some girlfriends. But I digress.) Generally you are invited to stash your clothes in a locker and don a robe and slippers (leave your underwear on but pull down your bra straps). Often you can sit in the sauna while you wait or sip herbal tea while seated on comfy couches and try to make awkward chit-chat with other women who will not meet your eye. Once in the treatment room, you take off your robe and slip under the covers on the table. Then the technician dims the lights, puts on the new agey soothing spa music and asks questions about your skin regime and in my case ususally gasps and asks where I live. When I confess that I live in the clutches of the wintery grasp. She starts to massage in various unguents, apply gritty scrubs, steaming mist, and cooling masks. The treatment usually lasts for an hour or so and they always try to sell you some of the products.

I did end up springing for the collagen mask and buying a lovely orange-scented scrub but did not go for the full body scrub. ew.

So, gonna try it?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Packing for a trip

Think she knows something is up? And yes, those are black pants she is sitting on. No sooner would I use the sticky cat-hair-remover-roller thing, and turn my back, then one or the other of them would be right back in. They have never done this before. At this rate, I'm going to have to pack the roller. I'm leaving for Texas tomorrow and will be back in a few days. The catsitter is en pointe, the house is clean and the neighbors are aware. TTFN.