The creative tutorial home of image wrangler, Lesa Snider.

Stuck in Salt Lake City

February 19, 2006 by

I now own the coolest travel brush ever. It's amazingly functional and pleasingly compact. It has half inch bristles that are stiff enough to comb through my long hair, though soft enough not to hurt, and it folds up to fit in my purse. How cool is that?! I've been on the lookout for a good travel brush for awhile now, and as you might imagine, they're hard to find.
I mean, you can find a travel brush, but the question becomes will it really allow you to brush your hair? Usually the answer is no. If you find one small enough, the bristles are so short they won't go through hair of any length, and others so dense with wire that they not only hurt, but doing any quality styling of any kind with a hair dryer is futile. This pretty blue travel brush, however, that Delta Airlines gave me for free, rocks.

How can you get yourself such a superior travel brush, you're surely asking? Well, believe me, it takes some time and patience, but it can be done. Let me now share with you just one method of landing your own Delta Airlines travel brush.

The adventure
This is not Calgary, nor is this Canada. This is Salt Lake City, Utah. I'm supposed to be in Calgary, but instead I'm sitting in the saddest motel I've encountered in at least 10 years. A dumpy little Quality Inn three miles from the airport that can't even afford fitted sheets or a restaurant. So how did I score being stuck in the driest state in the US overnight? Why, I must have been a bad girl.

The day started off well enough, though I was sad to leave Shawn and the cats for an entire week. I got myself packed, backed up my laptop, and poked everything into a sparkling new Brenthaven bag that I'll be trying out on this trip. It's a pretty pastel blue number, of the shoulder strap variety. After a non-eventful drive to the airport, Shawn dropped me off two hours early for the international flight, and everything proceeded to careen downhill from there.

First, a diabetic flight attendant passed out. After a 30 minute delay for the "crew medical emergency" (rather unsettling, don't you think?), the attendant was pronounced fit for flight and we boarded the plane only to find out it had started sleeting. This, of course, led to a relaxing hour and a half spent sitting motionless at the gate. I was seated, of course, next to a fat, grumpy man who complained the entire flight, ALL FOUR AND A HALF HOURS OF IT. "Four and half hours?!?" you might say, "to fly from Nashville to Salt Lake City? It shouldn't take that long." You're right, it doesn't take that long. Unless, of course, you have 200 mile an hour headwinds. Oh yeah, so once we finally got going, it took an hour longer than it was supposed to. Excellent.

I read a couple of magazines (Pink and Fast Company), and was amused by the big bitchy man's huffing and puffing while he tried playing Solitaire on a laptop he couldn't set on his tray table because of his fat stomach. This was after he complained about being hungry to the flight attendant (who now seemed overly perky) and had gorged on crackers, pretzels, several cookies, peanuts, and a granola bar or two. Gads :)

My mood was still surprisingly decent as I had my iPod loaded with podcasts from the Dragonpage, and was enjoying my magazines. Plus I had a tiny bit of hope that there might be a later flight to Calgary, or that my connecting flight had been delayed because of weather. No such luck. Once we got on the ground, things got a lot worse.

What made it so bad (besides the big fat bitchy man), was the complete lack on Delta's part of telling people what to do and where to go in the Salt Lake airport. People wondered around aimlessly, and finally, after being shooed to the baggage claim area, we trudged up to the ticket counter one by one. At first Delta didn't want to cover the hotel costs because they said the delay was due to weather. Luckily, a large "good ole boy" wasn't having any of that and pitched a fairly impressive fit, so when I got up to the counter, I smiled sweetly and the attendant was very appreciative of my attitude. He even got the manager involved to help get me to Calgary tomorrow in lieu of two days later like he initially thought. I took my hotel voucher, two $7 meal vouchers, and plastic overnight kit outside to wait for the shuttle.

So to make a long rant a little shorter, suffice to say I won't make it to Calgary until tomorrow afternoon. And if I'm lucky, my bags may actually get there. I was told my chances would be better if I just let Delta keep them tonight. Seriously?! Fine. Just get me there.

Once at the sad little motel, I tried to log onto the free wireless internet service after calling the front desk for a passcode. It didn't work. I call him back, he repeats the code, then gives me an 800 number to call to ask them. The 800 number requires a passcode, so I gave up. This of course after I'd also asked the front desk dude about vending machines. The conversation went like this.

Me: Hi, this is Lesa King in 218, I just checked in.
Him: And...?
Me: I was wondering, are there vending machines somewhere?
Him: Yeah.
Me: <pause> Where might they be?
Him: All over the place.
Me: <pause> So I just have to go find them?
Him: Yeah.
Me: THANKS SO MUCH <click>

Now, mind you, this is one of those motels where the rooms face the great outdoors. There are no hallways and it's freaking cold outside. They just had nine inches of snow the other day and though I've been wanting to see some snow, I was in no mood to go trudging around in it foraging for a diet coke.

I gave up and called Dominoes and, 45 minutes later, I had a diet coke and a pizza complete with jalapenos (respectably hot, I might add). Afterwards I couldn't resist the urge to dig through Delta's complimentary overnight kit and guess what I found? The *coolest* (seriously!) fold-up travel brush ever. How cool is that?! It was almost enough to make me not notice that the heater doesn't work and that there's no fitted sheet on the bed. Ah well. Here's hoping tomorrow goes a little smoother.