Travel Tales: Being OCD(ish)

Posted by Doc List
Sep 14 2017

As a frequent traveler, I find myself greatly amusing with some frequency.

For example, I like to set up my toiletries just so in the bathroom. I feel frustrated when I stay in a hotel room that has a vanity that is too small for my stuff. (Feel free to laugh along) There’s the face stuff and dental stuff and cotton swabs and so on, and I’m accustomed to each of them having a space and location in my setup.

As a result of this OCDish-ness, I find it annoying when the housekeeper comes in and rearranges my stuff. After all, isn’t it obvious that I put some effort into putting it all where I want it? Seriously. Isn’t it obvious?

On the other hand, I’ve enjoyed having the bed made and the trash emptied and so on. And yet, on the other other hand, it baffles me that the housekeeper will replace the soap (after a single day) or lotion (which I haven’t used) or even leave a second one because that’s what they do.

On my current trip, I remembered a couple of friends who left their Do Not Disturb signs on their doors for their entire stays. When I asked them why they said: “I don’t want anyone coming in and messing with my stuff.” As I was getting set up on Sunday night after arriving I wondered “I wonder what that would be like?”

I boldly decided to experiment and put out the Do Not Disturb sign and have left it there for four days. I think it’s important to understand one thing (besides the fact that I’m kinda OCD): I’m a VERY neat sleeper. When I wake up all I need to do is pull the sheet and blanket up a bit and the bed looks totally made. I realized that if I want fresh towels (which I really don’t need every day) I can just leave the towels outside the door. And I don’t make that much trash and have left that outside in nice plastic bags.

Did I mention the towels? One thing that has baffled me is that ALL of the hotels have these nice hanging tags that suggest reusing towels to save water and energy. I ALWAYS hang them up for the first day or two. Housekeeping ALMOST ALWAYS replaces them anyway.

So here I am in my private space into which NO ONE HAS INTRUDED. I’ve reused towels, emptied my own trash, made my own bed, and… I LIKE IT!

My toiletries stay where I want them. There is no waste of water or energy to wash towels that don’t need washing. There is no waste of free toiletries (which I sometimes take home to donate to homeless shelters and the like).

Overall I like it. I do.

I might have to have my own, private, personal Do Not Disturb sign printed so I can take it with me everywhere.

Because I am kinda OCDish. 😉


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