A couple of months ago, I made a solo trip to Galveston with the kids to visit my mom. It was my first time taking them to stay at a hotel without my husband, but since they were 4, 7, and 8, I was pretty confident that not much could go wrong. I didn’t need diapers or a pack-n-play, bottles, or any of the extra essentials that one needs when traveling with younger kids. And luckily (or not luckily, depending on how you look at it), the kids didn’t need naps anymore, so we had a pretty fluid schedule.
All of those positive things aside, I didn’t expect have the most embarrassing thing happen while we were there.
Two Minutes of Independence
One evening we swam in the hotel pool. On our way back up to the room, I let my oldest (8) take the room key and go ahead with her little brothers (4 and 7). I was behind them by maybe two minutes as I was hobbling with one of those orthopedic boots on my left leg.
We were all wet and in our swimsuits. I had just put our beach towels in the car before coming up to the room, so I was empty-handed except for my phone and keys.
The Missing Bottoms
When I got to the hotel room, the kids were waiting outside as they were supposed to. Only problem, my youngest (4) had taken his swimsuit bottoms off and they were nowhere to be found. He was dancing and twirling half naked in the hallway.
Two minutes. That’s all it took.
“That’s weird,” I muttered to myself as I tried to think where his bottoms might be. I was also hoping no one would walk by in those moments as he loves to declare his love for his nakedness. He also loves to shout the names of body parts to anyone willing to listen.
Instead of trying to interrogate him about the whereabouts of his bottoms, I decided the best thing to do was get into the room. Then the interrogation could begin.
The Broken Room Key
“Ok, sweet girl, use the key and open the door, please. We need to get your brother inside, ” I said hurriedly. She tried the room key. It didn’t work. I assumed she did it incorrectly, so I impatiently grabbed it from her and tried it myself. The red blinky lights appeared for me, too. All sorts of expletives ran through my mind. I kept trying the key as maybe on the 37th time of jabbing the key inside the slot, it would magically work. Red. Blinky. Lights. Every. Time.
So, we’re all standing outside the hotel room sopping wet and in our swimsuits (except my half-naked 4-year-old) and the room key didn’t work. I looked all around the hallway hoping his swimsuit bottoms would magically appear. NOPE.
In a quick 10 second interrogation, I found out that the kids had opened the hotel room 30 seconds before I had arrived and Bodie took off his bottoms before they all came outside again. So the room key worked long enough for youngest to get half-naked and now it decided not to work??! REALLY?
My Two Options
I had two options at this point:
- Leave all of the kids (including the half-naked one) outside the hotel room while I went down to the lobby by myself.
- Take all of the kids (including the half-naked one) to the lobby with me.
Since the half-naked one had already professed his half-nakedness to anyone that would listen as they walked by, he couldn’t be left by himself for fear of what he’d say. And based on what had already happened when I left the kids alone for two minutes, I didn’t want to find out what an additional two minutes could do.
Option 2 it was.
The Elevator Ride
“DO NOT SAY A WORD ABOUT BEING NAKED OR ABOUT YOUR BODY PARTS, OKAY?” I found myself saying this to my youngest as we made the attempt toward the elevator.
I’m sure you can guess what he said as soon as we got into the elevator with other hotel guests. “I’m NAKED!” he shouted. My other two kids were snickering, which made him say it over and over again to everyone.
Pamela the Front Desk Clerk
When we got to the lobby and I calmly asked the front desk clerk for a new room key. That’s when the half-naked one pulls himself up like a meerkat so he can see Pamela (said front desk clerk) and declare his lack of clothing to her. “So I see!” she says as she looks at me. I smiled uncomfortably.
I’m sure that’s not the craziest thing that Pamela has had to witness in her job, but it’s definitely the most embarrassing thing that I’ve been privy to.
Moral of the story: don’t leave the kids alone for two minutes or someone might end up naked.