Friday, April 29, 2011

Light Exchange

I needed to travel for work this week. I hadn't realized how long it had been since I have traveled until after I checked into the hotel room and notice that all of the lights in the room were compact fluorescent lights (CFLs)!

I didn't get into the room until real late that first night, but it quickly became apparent that it would not be good to be in an unknown client environment all day and then come back to a room full of CFLs. I made it through that first night by using the light from the television and turning on the bathroom light, which was around the corner, so I could see enough to get everything together I would need for the night and next morning.

So many things ran through my mind as to what I should do. Breakfast was right next to the concierge. I decided I would take a deep breath and go over there.

I am not really an overbearing person, but I have to do what I need to do for myself and to keep doing my job to the best of my abilities. I needed to be at the top of my game for this client visit. I was already very concerned about what their lighting environment was going to be like that I had to walk over to the front desk.

After I got there, I told them that I had a very unusual request. They smiled. I let them know that I am very sensitive to the CFL bulbs that are all over my room. I asked if there was any way they could change out one bulb to the old light bulb; the old incandescent bulb. They actually kept the smile on their faces and said it would be no problem! They said they would call maintenance to take care of my concern.

Shortly after I got back to my room, the maintenance man came in to change the bulb. He ended up changing all of the bulbs in the room except for one which he ended up unplugging because it had a different type of a fixture and a regular bulb couldn't just screw into it.

I ran into the maintenance supervisor several times during my trip and he always asked how my room was and how everything was going. It was really super! We had a nice talk this morning as I was leaving and I let him know that it made a world of difference to me and that I couldn't express how much it meant.

After driving about seven hours today, I have just checked into another hotel room in another state. Guess what they have? Compact fluorescent bulbs! I am only here one night so it's not as bad as the situation I was faced earlier with at the other hotel, but I figured what did I have to lose?

I called guest services. They were very apologetic about something that is not their fault, but due to a sensitivity that I have. They called maintenance who were at my room in no time. He needed to check to see if they had any old bulbs, but he really didn't think they did. I was totally surprised when he came back about fifteen minutes later with a bulb. He said he found it in one of the other rooms. Awesome, two for two!

I started to think that maybe I would be better off bringing my own light bulbs with me. Next month, I will be traveling again. However, this time I will be flying! Can you imagine the look on a TSA workers face if I brought a light bulb in my luggage after they x-rayed it? I'm sure I'd be pulled aside for trying to bring a light bulb onto a plane. Is it even legal?

If you were going to a hotel, what would you do? Would you bring your own light bulb for the hotel room?



WinnyNinny PooPoo said...

Migrainista, because I travel a lot, and it looks like you back in the saddle again, I call ahead when the reservations have been made and let them know ahead of time. It is not uncommon for special requests like "bed boards" under the mattress to be made, so they surely would try to "prep" your room before you got there. If they forget it is no problem, just deal with it as you have been. Another option is carrying your own reading lamp/light - some travel clocks include them?? I have used my laptop monitor like a nightlight before. I think a light bulb if not on carryon might get squished....

MigrainePuppet said...

Winny - I'll have to look into the travel clock/light option. I like the dual purpose of it especially since I always like to use two alarms when I am away anyway. I thought the TSA might think a broken light bulb could be used as a weapon and that they may confiscate it before hand. I'll call the hotel now that I am aware that they are all changing over to the CFLs too. Thanks for your 'bright' ideas!

themigrainegirl said...

I used to carry an LED book light with me, though of course that doesn't provide enough light to use in the bathroom of a hotel. I often call ahead to request incandescent bulbs; invariably, when I arrive no one at the receptionist's desk knows what I'm talking about. I use it as a chance to educate people a little bit about migraine disease, so even if I feel a little embarrassed, at least some good's coming out of it!

I always have a box of light bulbs in my trunk for when I'm on road trips. :)

MigrainePuppet said...

MigraineGirl - thanks for the additional ideas! I didn't think about carrying around light bulbs in my trunk, but they will be the next item I add in there. I also like the LED book light.

The bathroom will be the next challenge to overcome. I have a little more time to think about it before my next trip. I will call the hotel ahead of time, but want to have a plan B ready - just in case too.