25 May 2011
'Welcome, indeed...'Salt Lake City - Winnipeg. Travel day.
Returning to the slog of air travel was a bit of a come down after the freedom of our road trip from Vegas. The journey was happily uneventful if not the most comfortable, though we did get to enjoy some pretty spectacular airport cuisine en route, including a breakfast of chilli-cheese-fries and tepid English breakfast tea with powered creamer. Watched Frank Herbert’s Dune in flight and if anyone can tell me what the bloody hell that was all about, I’m all ears.
On arrival in Winnipeg the change in climate was quite apparent, as was the overwhelming not-darkness at 10pm. I’m somewhat in clothing disarray as I’ve got a bag of washing waiting to go in at the Rock & Roll Laundry plus some other garments that I accidentally left in ‘WillieWorld’, my front-of-house workbox and I seem to have mislaid my 360 tour rain jacket entirely. A sartorial shambles, I tell you, then suddenly it’s cold and I’m unprepared.
We made it to our hotel, The Overlook, an old place built on an Indian burial ground, a big hedge maze out front and with a strange old caretaker called Jack. Well, it had that kind of feel about it anyway. Being built in 1913 and modernised in the 80’s gives it some pretty heady décor moments as the faded grandeur of the lobby peters out in the guest room corridors. The story goes that the place is haunted and sure enough, tramping down the long corridor en route to my room, the eerie noises began. It was soon evident that these were of a more earthly nature, viz. a howling shagathon going on behind paper thin walls, accompanied by comedy porn-soundtrack animal noises. All that was missing was the wah-wah guitar. Welcome, indeed.
In my lavish suite, the presence in the bathroom of hotel-supplied mouthwash and earplugs also made me wonder if it was less likely that this occurrence was a one-off, but there wasn’t time to think about it as we travellers were hungry and there was a sports bar across the street offering steaks and ale.