======= ======= ====== ====== ====== ===== ==== ====== ====== ===== ==== ======= ======= ====== ====== ====== ===== ==== ====== ====== ===== ====
February in the midwest or northeast is not a real fun time to be alive and doing things. Football is over, it’s still dark outside when you leave work in the evening, and the temperatures can sometimes get down to a level that actually feel demoralizing when you’re outside and walking around.
January and February collectively suck the life out of people, and it’s easy to get yourself into a funk if you can’t look past the fact that this weather and this somewhat miserable existence is only temporary.
I get it, though. Seasonal affective disorder is very real, and we’re right smack dab in the middle of its peak. The only cure for this is a healthy dose of rest and relaxation.
Just last year right around this time I was in a particularly bad funk. I was sleeping on an air mattress and had just started a job that I hated with the fire of a thousand suns. I was also single, going out Thursday through Saturday and relentlessly hitting on any woman with a pulse. All of it – the drinking, the meaningless sex, my back from sleeping on an inflatable mattress – was starting to wear on me physically and emotionally.
So one Thursday afternoon while I sat in a break room eating a subpar turkey sandwich that I had made a few hours prior, I got on my phone and made myself a one night reservation with a king sized bed for Friday night through Saturday morning at The Drake in downtown Chicago.
The Drake is my favorite hotel in the city, and although I had never actually stayed there before this night in mid-February, I knew enough about it to know that it was a classy joint.
The room itself only ran me $140 dollars, and during that period of my life that was just a little bit more money than a standard Friday night out with friends. I was worn down, and at the time, it seemed like a better use of my time and money to treat myself rather than going through the motions at some shitty dive bar.
By the time Friday afternoon rolled around I was in high spirits. I had brought an overnight bag to work with me, and as soon as I got out around 4:30 p.m. I walked over to the hotel.
I wasn’t able to check in right away as I was told by the concierge that they were, at that very moment, cleaning my room. So I went over to the hotel bar and had a vodka soda while I waited. Thirty minutes and one cocktail later I was upstairs alone in a room.
I took a nap on the king sized bed. Following that, I ran myself a hot bath, accompanied by a Woodwick candle I had brought from home and a jazz playlist on Spotify simply called “Jazz for Sleep.”
I ordered room service, eating onion rings, two cheeseburgers, and sipping a martini in a robe supplied by the hotel. I got lucky in that Goodfellas was showing on AMC and I didn’t have to pay for a movie using the outdated pay-per-view service they had on the television.
By 10:00 p.m., I was exhausted from doing absolutely nothing, and I woke up with a smile on my face at 8:30 a.m. the next morning. I got myself a hot shower, lounged around in that robe I mentioned for another twenty or thirty minutes and checked out promptly at 10:00 a.m. Saturday morning.
By the time I got back to my actual home with a S.E.C. everything bagel and black coffee, I felt like I had the world at my fingertips.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that my cynical outlook on life was forever changed because I checked myself into a fancy hotel during the dregs of winter.
But what I can tell you is that it’ll help you out if you’re feeling the effects of seasonal affective disorder. It wasn’t exactly a cheap night out, but all together I think I spent around $200 dollars and I can tell you without a doubt that it was well worth the price.
We all need a little bit of R&R every now and again, and getting a hotel room and pampering the living hell out of yourself is a great way to remember that spring will be here before you know it..
Image via Youtube