I just walked into my motel room to the pervasive smell of smoke in my non-smoking room. Apparently the previous guest thought 'non-smoking' meant 'less than a pack a day.' Either that, or this little 'no smoking' card on my night stand was put in mere moments before my arrival.
But I'm not gonna complain. I'm cool. Plus this room was so cheap I wouldn't be surprised at finding a body or a bullet-hole.
Then I go to unpack my toiletries next to the sink. The surprisingly clean sink, the sink with the well-ordered linen pyramid and the tidy trash can and the soaps folded into a clever washcloth boat. Then I see it.
Oh yes. Oh yes, it is.
It is a half-finished bottle of wine.
Re-corked, just chillin' here on this sparkling counter like it moved in with the last patron and thought, 'Yeah, yeah, this feels about right. I think I'll stay.'
I was startled. It wasn't like, say, a tissue in the trash, something that is understandably overlooked. This is a bottle of WINE. It's not a QUIET thing, a blending white crumpled thing. It's red, and it's got a long neck, and it's on an empty COUNTER.
I moved it with my elbow so I could see the label. Not that if it were nice I'd OPEN it or anything. Unless it were a Cakebread. Or a Duckhorn. We'd all become depraved humans at that opportunity.
But it was as I suspected: A Motel Red. That is a category of wine I'm now creating. Motel Red is the wine you get when you're staying the night in a smoke-infused motel room on an empty highway with nothing but an old t.v. and crusty remote control to entertain you, where your evening is spent half-heartedly flipping through staticky local programs from atop a coarse bedcover in a tuscan color scheme. Motel Red is a wine you buy when you don't really care--you're only going to have a glass (maybe two) anyway, and nobody's around to question your taste, and anyway, it will help you sleep. And when you pack your bags the next day, you leave it, because it has served its purpose. It's Motel Red. The one-night-stand of the wine family.
But it's still a bit shocking the maid didn't notice Motel Red perched merrily next to the bath linens. Maybe it was hers, something she brought along to take the edge off her shift. Or maybe she had planned to take it home and then forgot. Or maybe she's so used to half-drunk wine bottles in her own bathroom that this one flew by undetected. Either way, it's a strange, strange thing to find next to a bar of tissue-wrapped waxy soap.
Also, she neglected to leave me a glass. How am I supposed to drink my...water?