Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Some shall be More equal than others

It is reputed that guests, especially celebrity guests, are apt on occassion to make to their hotel some very unorthodox requests.

Mine Host had never encountered this.

Occassional celebrities stay, enough of them that it isn't a talking point. (i.e. there is no gushing of: "Guess who was staying in-house here & checked out just this morning.....?)

Politicians are even more regular. Many Ministers know Mine Host by first name, (nobody has ever asked Mine Host's surname)

Recently Mine Host experienced his first unusual request from a public figure:

Politicians of all levels & all stripes are regular guests of Mine Host's top class hostelry, guess which party (or side of politics) this one is.

The offspring of a professional politician, who at a young age inherited the seat (& fast track to ministry) from their parent.

Some ministerial staff will double or triple check booking arrangements. For higher level public figures protection teams will make advance visits to scout out the premises, for lower level protected politicians phone calls & floor plans suffice.

However for a simple short stay, the staff of this minister made countless phone calls, emails, faxes, etc. All seeking endless verbal reassurance of just the one request:

That due to the Minister's station in life & high rank, the minister must be accommodated in a room on a higher floor than the floor where accompanying staff are booked, and that the staff would be in rooms directly below the Minister's room.

George Orwell's "Animal Farm" has a chapter where the Pigs start walking on their hind legs only. Mine Host has a very clear mental image of this, formed in his childhood when he first read the novel. This image, complete with colour, motion & sound, replays in his head on endless loop whenever this particular Minister's name is heard.


Kay said...

You sure do have an interesting life. Floods, mayhem, and now political people. Good gracious! I'm glad your place is cleaned up so politicians can book a room again.

Boy on a bike said...

How things have changed. One of my relatives was a federal minister back in the 1970s. He tended to stay in country pubs and booked a lot of his travel himself. He traveled on his own a lot, and if he took a staffer, he'd only take one. From what I gather, most of the other ministers did the same.

The story of John Curtin and his visit to the Niagara Cafe in Gundagai is I guess fairly typical of how things were done until probably the 1990s.


Mine Host said...

Boab, thanks for the link. What a beaut story.

Fear not, (rationing aside) things are still done that way in much of the country.

I get bunches of Nat/Liberal & Labour politicians staying here together. Radical activists & conservative politicians are prone to sit & talk civilly over a cuppa, when the day's posturing is over & they are "off duty" a long way from the Metropolis.

They either come to my place, or mix with the (ugh) "people" & I've yet to see a professional activist do that!

Now that a few of them have been actually elected I'm looking forward to my first Green senator coming to stay.

Slatts said...

I'm looking forward to my first Green senator coming to stay.
Oh well, you'll save on soap and hot water.