The Rodeway Inn

$150 will get you a pretty nice room in a lot of places, but not in Los Angeles. I guess I sort of knew that, but my refusal to accept it led CJ and me to a place called the Rodeway Inn. There are several Rodeway Inns, and at first I drove to the wrong one. “We don’t have your reservation,” the innkeeper told us from behind bulletproof glass. “Drive two miles south and turn right.”

“I have to go potty!” CJ yelled. I raised my eyebrows at the innkeeper. He shook his head.

Getting back in the car, I realized the Rodeway Inn was not an ideal choice. But it was way past CJ’s bedtime and I didn’t want to spend the next hour trying to find a vacancy someplace else. Plus she had to go potty.

The Rodeway Inn 2 miles south was a little bit nicer, but not a lot. There was no bulletproof glass, but the doors were open to the alleyway, so that we–or anyone else–could walk straight to any room from the parking lot. We carried all our belongings to the front desk and checked in. “We had, uh, a suite?” I told the innkeeper.

“A suite?” he said with exactly the same inflection. “Oh yeah. You won’t see the second room when you walk in, but when you close the outside door you’ll see a little passageway.”

It was true. The other thing I noticed when I closed the door was that it was only half painted. And there were three locks on it, one of which looked a little scuffed. I fastened them all.

When I requested a suite I had imagined watching TV in the adjoining room after CJ went to bed. But we’d arrived 2 hours later than planned. CJ climbed right into the bed by the outside door.

“Don’t you want to go down the hallway?” I asked her. “Sleep in that bed. It’ll be quieter.”

“No,” CJ said. “I want to sleep here. You sleep with me, Daddy.”

I looked down the hall, but there was no way I was going down there and leaving her here. And I was too tired to argue.

“Okay,” I said. “But scoot over. I’m going to sleep closest to the door.”

CJ’s presence at continental breakfast shows it all worked out okay.

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