Too Tired to Toddle.

Well, this was a first for me: sitting in my hotel room here in Chicago while a thunder storm occurs overhead. Believe me, it’s a singular experience. The claps of thunder get down into the canyons between these 60- and 70-floor buildings and bounce around, amplified and taking on an almost unearthly metallic sound from all the steel and glass. Before the first one dies away, a second boom occurs and it happens all over again. It’s impressive.
For my one night in Chicago, I’m staying at the hotel that’s been selected as the host hotel for NARP’s 50th Anniversary celebration in the first week of November next year. It’s a wonderful old hotel with a beautiful lobby and a large very ornate ballroom. It’s not a big hotel by Chicago standards–just some 400 rooms–but that a perfect size for our meeting next year because our event will dominate the facilities here. I’m in a standard room and it’s very nice: a bit more spacious than the average, I’d guess, and well appointed.
The only problem I can see are the elevators. There are only three, and each has a capacity of just six people. That might have been adequate in the 1920s, but it’s borderline today. I can visualize a luncheon concluding and 150 to 175 of our attendees all wanting to get back into their rooms for a few minutes before the afternoon session begins.
Of course the reality is that none of the hotels considered are perfect. For instance it’s important that the room rates be affordable because we want to attract a lot of younger NARP members to this big event, so the shortage of elevator space is a trade-off for affordable room rates.
Well, I’ve been up for a couple of days with only catnaps at 30,000 feet in the way of rest, so I’m going to turn in. Tomorrow I’m taking the Lake Shore Limited overnight to Boston. I’ll take a number of photographs of the new Metropolitan Lounge at Union Station and post them before I actually board. And so to bed . . .