Disneyland may be regarded by many as a place where childhood dreams come true, but for one unfortunate lady and her poor family, their long awaited trip to Disneyland Paris almost turned into a hellish nightmare.
When British woman Justine Sharples managed to get enough money together to take her desperately ill son Matthew and the rest of her family to Disneyland, she had no reason to believe the four-day holiday would be anything but the dream Disney trip that so many families across the world save hard and plan patiently for.
Initially, Justine was told that the trip would cost $7,573. However, because her three-year-old son Matthew needs 24-hour-care and a fridge to store his essential food and medicines in, Justine asked if Disneyland could provide a fridge in her room.
Disney agreed, but only if Justine would pay $56,477 instead of the initial $7,573.
Matthew’s mother was mortified at Disney’s lack of understanding. To her, a fridge was not a luxury, but an essential practicality which was vitally important to her son’s well-being.
Matthew suffers from a congenital anomaly causing a blockage in the urethra with the added complications of acute renal failure and a damaged bladder and colon.
Because of his condition, Matthew is unable to eat normally and survives on baby milk pumped directly into his stomach through a tube.
He relies on a 12-times-daily cocktail of drugs, which must be refrigerated, and his mother has to catheterize him every two hours.
Justine told the Mail on Sunday:
“Disney insisted the cost was high because the only accommodation at the resort with a fridge was their Sleeping Beauty suite, ‘used by celebrities.’ I was offered the use of the fridge in the Disneyland Hotel’s reception but explained this was impractical as I had to get up three times nightly to administer drugs and catheterise Matthew.”
Justine offered to provide her own fridge or pay extra for one to be fitted in a standard room, but her solution was refused because it was ‘against hotel policy.’
Justine was devastated and explained:
“Disney is everything Matthew loves. He so wants to see Buzz Lightyear and the other characters. We don’t know how long we’ve got him for because his condition, called PUV, is life threatening.”
This story, however, does have a happy ending. When The Mail on Sunday contacted Disney, a spokesperson said there had been a ‘misunderstanding’ with hotel booking staff.
The spokesperson told The Mail:
“Mrs Sharples has booked two rooms with Disneyland Paris. One will come with a portable fridge to accommodate medicine for her son Matthew. We sincerely regret any misunderstanding that occurred. Disneyland Paris works with around 80 different wish-giving associations across Europe and we warmly welcome children who require special care.”
As a result of the ‘misunderstanding,’ the Sharples family have also been provided with complimentary VIP tickets.
Some people just like to complain and unfortunately, they are more likely to log on and make it public.
When I worked the hotel front desk, I never once saw a fellow co-worker behave rudely to a guest, and anything that did go wrong was completely out of our control. Sadly, that didn't stop people from posting terrible reviews online, while neglecting to mention the lengths that we would go to trying to improve the quality of their stay.
My favorite complaint? "Children were making noise in the pool area!"
Those terrible kids, having fun and splashing in our pool! Don't they know that a pool is like a library? Shame on them!
From Reddit: My hotel room is under water.
I dunno, as cool as it looks, for those of us traumatized by films like JAWS, spending the night next to that would be a sleep full of nightmares!
From Reddit: So my Embassy Suites hotel room has some sort of computer console inside a closet. Anyone know what this is?
Two of the responses:
Looks like networking switches.The orange line is fiberoptic cable and most likely the uplink. The black and dark blue are ethernet.
This isn't someone thing anyone with common sense would put in an accessible place. You could plug in and mess up their configuration, monitor traffic, or get free internet.
For fuck's sake, that's in a revenue room? This is a wiring closet, the cables you're seeing likely control all of the telephony and internet on that floor of the hotel. There is zero excuse for this to be somewhere that a guest can access it.
Don't use the hotel wifi.
To see other responses click here.
RENO, Nev. (AP) — Nancy Frank could no longer care for her two Chihuahuas so she was glad to find a young man she thought would give them a good home.
Days later the dogs' remains turned up at gruesome site in a Reno motel room where detectives found a decapitated dog and four dog heads in a small refrigerator — two belonging to Frank's pets, according to court records.
Jason Brown, 24, was arrested July 9 and charged with six felony counts of torturing or maiming and killing an animal in the troubling case that has sparked public outrage.
Authorities said they were called to the motel in a busy area across the street from a shopping mall in suburban south Reno after a maid reported the discovery in a room Brown had been renting.
Officers also found two bloody kitchen knives, the scissors of a Swiss Army knife, two dog collars with rabies tags registered to Frank along with her dogs' dishes, blankets and tennis balls she had given Brown to help make her pets happy.
On Wednesday, a half-dozen animal protection activists with signs demonstrated outside Reno Justice Court, where Brown's status hearing had been scheduled but was continued to Oct. 16.
His lawyer, John Oakes, told the Reno Gazette-Journal last month that Brown has mental health issues and might need a psychiatric evaluation before he goes to trial.
Prosecutors say Brown killed five dogs at the motel and a sixth at another location. He was being held at the county jail on a $70,000 cash bond and could face more than 20 years in prison if convicted on all counts. The former Reno High School student also faces two counts of possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine.
Melissa Lubeck of Nevada Voters for Animals was among the protesters who turned out in front of the courthouse in hopes of making sure Brown doesn't get out of jail anytime soon.
"We want to make sure justice is served," Lubeck said. "We don't want him to get any plea deal."
Security was beefed up inside and outside the court complex. Citing concerns for Brown's safety, the county jail did not make public the usual information about the status of an inmate.
"He is off our website for security reasons," sheriff's spokesman Bob Harmon said.
Court documents show that during Brown's interrogation on July 9, he acknowledged he bought a dog from Frank and that he was living alone in the motel.
He initially said he entered the room two days earlier to find his gray dog dead in the bathroom, Washoe County sheriff's Detective Joe Bowen wrote in a probable cause report. Brown said the dog looked like it had been cut up, and he suspected a girl named Debbie did it. He later changed his story, the report said.
Bowen said Cheryl Bluhm, a lifelong friend of Brown and his family who was interviewed by detectives the day of his arrest, said Brown talked about having "urges of rage" during a June 25 telephone conversation. The next day, she said, Brown told her he had killed his friend's dog and it "made him high," Bowen wrote.
Hotels are notorious for overcharging customers for everyday items, but one U.K. businessman is reeling after being charged about $127 for three bottles of sparkling water.
Edward Heaton, a U.K.-based property advisor, scheduled a meeting with his client at the Crystal Bar of the Wellesley Hotel in London. According to the Independent, the businessman ordered three 500ml bottles of San Pellegrino, a sparkling water that usually retails for around $2 a bottle.
Though Heaton expected to pay a little more for the hotel’s premium service, he was floored when the bill arrived. The water came to £16.50 (about $28). What Heaton didn't realize is that the 5-star hotel imposes a service charge of £25 ($43) per person for customers using its bar after 4 p.m. This was on top of a £50.17 ($85) "minimum spend" fee --bringing the total to £75.
“For £75, we probably could have had a nice glass of wine each or maybe even a bottle of champagne,” Heaton told the Independent. “But three bottles of water? I wasn’t angry. I was just totally bemused."
Heaton has vowed never to go to the Wellesley Hotel after the incident.
“I spend a lot of time in central London and I have a lot of meetings in the top hotels. I am pretty well versed in how these places work but I have never had this before. I will never set foot in that hotel again.”
The businessman admits that he paid the bill without incident to avoid making a scene in front of his client but later complained to the hotel claiming no one explained the minimum charge, nor were there any menus set out that would have clarified item prices. He even posted a picture to twitter with a warning to potential Wellesley bar goers.