When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

20 December 2005

You can get used to anything, I guess

Back in Dallas for one final week of change management classes before Christmas, and I think I've finally found the perfect hotel room for my needs.

Now that I've been living in New York City for ten years, I find it impossible to sleep in a truly quiet room.

Even on our idyllic West Village side-street, there's plenty of noise at night: cars going by, people talking on the street, sirens from ambulances arriving at nearby St. Vincent's Hospital... to me, the mingled street noises are a lullaby. (Throw in a snoring Chow Chow or two and I couldn't be happier.)

When I travel, if I'm not in a noisy part of a major city, I have to create some comforting background noise to fall asleep. In a hotel room, I usually tune in CNBC, turn the sound way down so that there's sort of a constant background mutter (unless they're rerunning Jim Cramer's show, in which case it's a sort of muted background screaming) and drift off; other places, I've been known to carry a little transistor radio to assure myself of some ambient noise. Silence is actually a little creepy to me now.

The people at the Adam's Mark Dallas must think I'm a trifle strange. The hotel is quite near a light rail station (very convenient!) and when I checked in last night, I asked specifically for a room on a low floor overlooking the train tracks.

"Um, sure, we can do that," the nice-but-bewildered lady at the front desk said hesitantly. I smiled happily.

Last night, I was lulled to sleep by the sound of steel wheels, electric motors and ringing bells, as the DART Red Line ran outside my window. (It doesn't quite run all night--they seem to take a break between midnight and 4 AM - but it was more than enough to get me to sleep. Bliss!)

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