It seems pretty clear – happiness resides in the land of the open palm, the gracious gesture, the ease of time stretching slowly away. Misery knows the closed fist. the grasping, the muscles tense and rigid.
But then there’s money.
I love tennis. In August, 2019, I booked ten nights in a Montreal hotel for the summer of 2020. My sole reason for going was to feel the majesty of the women’s Rogers Cup tennis tournament.
This spring, the Government of Quebec said no to any professional sporting events in the province, due to Covid. Sad but alert, I leapt into action, asking the hotel to refund my money. They told me I’d have to talk to the travel company with whom I booked.
And so it began.
Actually, it wasn’t just one conversation with the hotel. I’m guessing that I’ve phoned them 20-25 times and have talked to a real person 2-3 times. Many requests on the answering machine for the manager to phone me went for naught. (Sigh)
Four months after my initial contact in May, and after probably 8-10 hours on the phone, $886.83 is still in someone else’s pocket. Today’s contribution was over two hours, talking to two reps of the travel company. My case had been “elevated” but instead I felt submerged.
Throughout the process, I’ve seen errors of omission, broken promises about when people would get back to me, and I believe (on the hotel’s part) some deceit.
The next chapter will be a phone call on Monday morning – the hotel manager, the travel company, and me.
I’m not letting go. Am I creating a lot of unhappiness for myself? Am I wise to stand up for myself? Am I being “Bruce”? Somehow it feels right to be in these shoes of mine. To quietly ask for fairness. To not give up. Although there are far better ways to spend eight hours than speaking into my smartphone and listening to what comes back, I find myself quietly nodding in approval for the journey I’ve chosen. Whatever the outcome.