The journey seemed endless as the miles on the highway ticked by slowly. Too slowly. My iPod blurted all too familiar tunes, Pandora acted squirrley, singing aloud and off key bored me. Another mile. And another.
Google Maps finally announced my exit from the Interstate and I knew the hotel was only a few feet away. “Your destination is on the right.” Sweeter words were never uttered.
I parked my car and slowly walked to the lobby, hoping the kinks would work their way out of my knees in a moment. Too long in one position in the seat took its toll on my body in more ways than I cared to recount.
Check in seemed endless and no I don’t need two keys. The room is just up the stairs and no, we don’t have an elevator, sounded in my ear. Eight hours on the road and now, I have to lug a suitcase up a flight of stairs. I sighed and steeled myself for the task.
Trunk open and suitcase on the ground beside me. I grabbed the laptop bag, my small toiletries case, my purse and my wits. Ready. I silently blessed the woman who invented a suitcase with the handle and wheels. It had to be a woman because the solution is incredibly practical. Like pantyhose. Like hair dryers.
“Let me get the door for you.” Southern twang from the right. I turned and looked into the bluest eyes I had ever seen. He wore inevitable cowboy boots, jeans that molded themselves to his skin, a t-shirt that announced his love of ZZ Top and a perfect smile. Teeth straight and white as a movie star’s. Brown hair long enough to show the curls at the end. And six foot four. Perfect in every way.
“Why didn’t I meet you twenty years ago? Or thirty?” I wonder.
He pulled the door to the lobby open and allowed me to enter. The door closed and he grabbed my suitcase handle. “Let me get that for you. Where to, Ma’am?” Don’t you just love Southern hospitality?
“That’s just at the top of the stairs.” He pushed the handle into the suitcase and picked it up, not bothering with the wheels. Up the steps, two at a time and I doggedly followed, trying to keep the agony of sore knees from showing on my face.
He put the suitcase in front of the door, and raised the handle up so I could pull the case into the room. “Room 204, as ordered.” His smile brightened the entire floor. He turned and stepped toward the stairs, again.
“Thank you, very much,” I managed to say before he descended.
“No problem. Anytime, Ma’am.”
And he vanished down the stairs returning to the errand my arrival interrupted. Random act of kindness? Likely I reminded him of his mother. Or his grandmother. Whatever the case, I will remember that bright smile and those blue eyes for a very long time.