Oh readers, this was a TERRIFIC start to the morning of the Frankenstorm's arrival [living in Northern Virginia, we were in the peripheral path - YAY?! Thankfully little actual damage occured - we were very lucky] ...
Walking into work at my No-tell Ho-tell, nothing seemed to be amiss.
Yes, there's lunacy [wait, when isn't there?] and yes, there's a definite manic-ness to several guests, but, there's a natural disaster looming, so this is forgivable. After trolling through the usual asenine drek of questions, 'yes, breakfast is served ... RIGHT THERE, ma'am.' 'Of course there's coffee - I don't live in a world without it.' 'Check-out's at eleven, no, you cannot check-out at 3 - our housekeepers leave around then.' I get into the rhythm and get my morning under way.
Of course, no day in Retail Hell is complete without something hitting the fan, is it? Cut to a few hours later when I had my sudden and all-too-unpleasant realization that not only had someone NOT been checked into the computer system, but their pre-lim Credit Card Authorization had come back declined.
Jumping into action [okay, just calling Housekeeping on the phone] I confirm that yes, someone did stay in the room - a family matching the description in the reservation.
Being the smart, sassy and all-around fabulous [read: snarky gay ass] employee that I am, I took it into my own hands and rang up their room. What follows is an accurate transcript of what transpired:
Sleepy Fuck Custy Cow: Hello?
Me: Hello, this is Benjamin at the Front Desk, I wanted to see how everything is - were you planning on staying over as Check-out was 25 minutes ago.
Sleepy Fuck Custy Cow: I, uhm.
Me: Either way, would you please come down to the Lobby so that we can scan your Credit Card and issue a new key?
Sleepy Fuck Custy Cow: ... *shady pause* ... I'll be right down.
Okay, so she hung up on me. So what. We can assume from this polite interaction that she's coming right down to pay, right?
20 minutes later - no sign. Though one of my Housekeepers, Bianca, most emphatically assures me in her broken English that 'Yepp; peepal in dere.'
Another 20 minutes later - no answer on the room phone.
Responsibility, displeasure and the large amounts of black coffee [bitter, strong and there better be no cream or sugar in it, or so help you ...] eat at my stomach. I'm going to have to give this asshat Custy a call on her cell-phone, aren't I? So now, a good 40+ minutes after she promised she would be right down to correct this oversight, I am dialing her cell from mine.
No answer and a disposable phone voicemail message greets me.
Quelle shock. Cue the*eyeroll*
Choosing to now employ the complete authority that my job really doesn't lend itself ['we empower our employees to think and act as best according to their own intuition ... except when we say otherwise; which is at our whim.'] I send my *cough* imposing Maintenance Man [yeah, if 6'2" and 130 lbs of spindly, dying old redneck is imposing] and my lovely interim Head of Housekeeping [yes, like the stereotype, my staff are all middle-aged Hispanic women whose English is tenuous at best] to go investigate:
The room is now empty and trashed.
Do I call and leave a voicemail on their cell-phone this time politely explaining that because they skipped out on their bill AND violated the agreement on their treatment of the room Our Company Lawyers would be advised into looking at how best to pursue reccompense, including the $150 fine? Do I then debate on calling their credit card company and reporting the card as stolen?
Well, I'll leave that to your guessing.
What I will own up to is the urge to go and write said cell phone number on a bathroom wall at the local Rest Stop.
"FOR A CHEAP-ASS BILL-DODGER, PLEASE CALL SLEEPY FUCK CUSTY COW AT 520-XXX-1720"