I’m sorry,” the hotel desk clerk told me, “But this reservation says you’re booked for next month.” Next month? I’d just driven 175 miles through a snowstorm from Spokane, Washington to Bozeman, Montana to inspect a real estate site for my job as a commercial underwriter. This was the last thing I needed.
“We don’t have any vacancies, but I can call some other hotels in the area for you,” the clerk offered.
“Alright,” I sighed. It gets lonely on the road sometimes, but the luxuries of a nice hotel room help make up for it. What if I ended up in some dump? At least I won’t be spending the night in the car.
The clerk managed to find me a room in a hotel across the freeway. My new accommodations weren’t as nice, but they would do. I drove over, checked in for the night and went up to my room on the third floor.
The next morning, I went down to the lobby for some breakfast, still exhausted from the drive and the reservation mix-up. I poured some coffee and gazed out the window. The ground was covered in a fresh blanket of snow.
“Hey, Allan!” Someone shouted. Huh? Who knew me here? I spun around.
“Ed?” An old friend from California. I hadn’t seen him in years. “What are you doing here?” I asked.
He and his family were on their way home from visiting Yellowstone National Park. The two of us sat together for breakfast, catching up and reminiscing. I was so happy to see a familiar face that I forgot all about my troubles from the night before.
Eventually, it was time for me to go. “Come back to the room and say hello to the family before you head out,” Ed said.
The two of us rode the elevator up to the third floor. Their room was right next to mine.