But I had no idea that in the last year my favorite hotel had turned into the Hobbitday Inn.
At least, as was proven by the bathroom improvements.
Oh, sure, at first glance the photo above looks like a normal shower stall. Just one of those newfangled jobbies with the detachable shower heads, so you can, I don't know, go spelunking in your personal nooks and crannies.
(Meaning, ya hesitate to touch the thing due to its lengthy and somewhat nebulous public spelunker heritage.)
But this shower head seemed to be at the default setting for the non-elf-or-human cast of Lord of the Rings. So without touching it much, I slid the shower head clamp up as high as it would go on its pole. Which at my five-foot eight, it came roughly shoulder height.
Not super for rinsing out tiny shampoo, granted, but it guaranteed me a very squeaky-clean shoulder-neckish region. Sometimes in travel, we must make concessions.
So I turned on the water. I grabbed tiny shampoo and...
A rush of water goosed me like I was a torpedo-bosomed 50s secretary at a used car salesman's convention.
I leapt sideways and turned, accusingly. The shower head looked guilty.
Also possibly like it had been drinking.
"Naughty boy," I scolded it, and moved it back up to shoulder height. I pushed the little black button on the bottom of it, to lock it in place. I stepped back in anticipation of further unruliness. It quivered slightly at my admonition, but held.
"Good." I reached down to pick up the tiny shampoo, which was circling in the water like a life raft for mini-Gilligan and...
I reeled two feet forward from the trauma of a second fixtural assault.
"Okay. We need to talk," I told the faucet head firmly.
It gushed out a shower of apologies, as these repeat offenders tend to do. And I moved the shower head up two feet once more.
The shower head stayed but looked away, turning its head with feigned guilt to the wall. The bastard.
"You've lost my trust," I said, and decided I'd better keep an eye on this bad boy. I fumbled for the tiny shampoo without taking my eyes off my assailant. I seized the bottle, and lathered the stuff through my hair. All seemed well.
It was as I began the rinsing routine that I started to realize...
Was I getting... taller?
No, the shower head was slowly, quietly, stealthily sinking, millimeter, by millimeter, back to its lecherous agenda.
Reluctant to turn away, I bent to follow it. Soon I was crouching. Then kneeling. Down, down, down we both slid, until BUMP! I was washing my hair while sitting on the bottom of the tub.
Cleanliness is next to Hobbitness, apparently.
And it's all good unless you mind going soapy to Second Breakfast.