When I went to bed, I closed the curtains. Unfortunately even at full stretch, the curtains only spanned half the width of the window. This was excellent news as I was able to cancel my 07:30 wake-up call as the morning sun streaming into the room at 05:45 was just as effective.
The shower worked although it was a little tardy to empty. So slow, I thought I was going to have a minor flood on my hands but fortunately the sill was pretty deep and disaster was narrowly avoided.
Breakfast was disappointingly adequate - cereals, bread, cheese, ham, fruit coffee and tea. The churn labelled ‘Milk’ was empty so I took my chances on an adjacent, unlabelled silver vessel. Consequently, I drenched my Frosties in natural yoghurt which was an unusual combination but a pleasant change.
There was also a strange fruit juice which was a hybrid of mango and orange. Similar to what is called cheap ‘Orange Drink’ in England; neither fresh orange juice nor orange squash and tasting rather artificial and very sickly.
After breakfast, I decided it would be prudent to double-check on the availability of the presidential suite in 406 just to ensure that Carol Smiley, ‘Handy Andy’ and Laurence Llewlyn-Bowen had finished building walk-in wardrobes from MDF and covering the bed in dark red, Gothic materials.
Slowly and carefully, I explained the situation and the pretty receptionist duly confirmed ‘Yes. Mr. Anderson. I have you booked into room 406 for 4 nights.’
I immediately crossed over to the Hilton, heaved a huge sigh of relief as the desk told me they had some availability and booked in for two nights. I crossed back over the road and checked out of Grand Central 2 days early, claiming my Grandmother had just died and I had to return to England immediately.
The nightmare was finally over. Only it wasn’t. The young lady on reception was a new-hire and couldn’t process my booking (or cancellation) using my credit card. Finally, with the unconvincing words ‘OK. I have read the big book and I think I have done it now’, I left, thankful to make my escape.
I am now installed in the Hilton which is bland and very overpriced but it’s like going into Macdonalds, you know exactly what you are going to get.
Pity really as the Dutch version of ‘Flowery Twats’ would undoubtedly have provided a wealth of valuable blogging material for the next 48 hours.