Rooftop pools.

Honesty, I was just trying to get to the mall.

But then I saw a Starbucks in the Sheraton on Canal St. and ducked in for my little icy nonfat mocha. You know me, the Starbucks led to the spectacular lobby, which led to the elevators, which led to the balcony, which led to the courtyard, which led to the pool deck, which required a hotel key, which I did not have. But it got me thinking. Hotels are the key to success if you live in a hospital-ish dorm with no immediate pool access, and they create the best avenue to fake yourself into the lifestyles of the rich and famous. Hotels could be my new car dealerships.

So today I went through every major hotel on Canal street to scope out the pool situation.

Harrah’s was a fabulous maze of casino and food courts and shopping areas which left me feeling very nostalgic for my annual Brookie-Dad-Sprinky-Mylissa weekend in Vegas. It would have been happening next weekend had it not been preempted by all these blasted school acceptances and weddings and unemployments. Next year.

I got a tiny bit braver and asked the front desk for a hotel map. Then I asked where the fitness room was, and then where the pool was. The concierge gave me a tour. She also told me that Harrah’s has an arrangement with Lowe’s next door to use their rooftop pool for $10. I just had to notify the bellman.

Harrah’s eventually wound around to Fulton Street, which was a pedestrian walkway with cute little outdoor cafés and restaurants, and Fulton Street wound around to the Hilton. Counting on the same success with Hilton as with Harrah’s, I asked the concierge for a general layout of the hotel. We matched the streets with the map and located the main pool deck on the third floor. I thanked her and made for the escalator, befriending a Spanish-speaking caterer on the way who escorted me to the pool deck, thrilled that I could speak in Spanish, as he could only understand about 7 words of English.

I examined every square inch of the Hilton, which was connected to the mall, and discovered that while the small pool on the riverside deck requires a room key, the main pool is open and available to all who can find it! Success!

I spent the rest of the afternoon at the pool, and then hopped a streetcar to the Canal St. shoppes, where I had planned to see a movie for $5.50. But then Macbook crashed. Daggers!

I started to walk home to figure out how to un-crash it, but a pop-up rainstorm landed me back in the Sheraton lobby in a plush leather chair on the phone with the Mac help desk listening to soft jazz and piano music from the bar. We reinstalled the installation disc over the phone and all was resorted, thank GOD. Me with no macbook? I would sooner die.

*It crashed again. Gotta go. You might not hear from me for a while- tomorrow I have to give little Macbook to the Mac surgeons.

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