I’m in Texas on a road trip. Day One: fly ten hours from London to Houston and then drive three to Austin. But I’m happy because I had asked the car rental agency for the biggest baddest car they had and they didn’t let me down.
I can’t see that many practical advantages driving this beast. It’s actually not that fast and or well equipped. But it’s a truck and I’m five feet off the ground and the 5.5L V8 makes a gorgeous gurgle. That’s the thing here – I’m driving a tank, it’s all about me, king of the effing road and the rest of the planet doesn’t count.
Day Two: we check into Hotel Aloft. It’s a 70 odd chain owned by Starwood. It’s a big box with 140 rooms, a trendy reception and I count three staff. There’s no eating apart from a self-service snack bar (pay receptionist), a self-service gym and a pool table. Our rooms got cleaned at 5.30pm. But we like this cool feature free box. There’s a good shower, free wifi and low prices.
That’s the thing here – without being barren it’s a no frills approach to overnighting. We leave feeling smug about our discovery, and now I’m telling all my friends – why pay for amenities you never use?
Two days, two different things. A gross, two fingers up at the world of auto and a stripped down, stylistic but simple place to sleep - each equally confident in their ‘thing’. Makes me think how compromises ruin great ideas. Many would hate my auto or choice of hotel. But accepting and even enjoying rejection – isn’t this how we really define what’s brilliant about what we’ve got – our ‘thing’?