Murphy—as in Murphy’s Law—has a personal interest in our family. He has gone many places with us, even on honeymoon several years ago.
It was the weekend of our nation’s bicentennial. The person who was supposed to make honeymoon motel reservations before our wedding, didn’t follow through. My husband said, “We can just travel till we find a motel with a vacancy sign and pull over.” That didn’t happen.
We spent the first night in the hatchback of our car, parked alongside a dark, two-lane highway. Tractor trailers whisked by, shaking our little Nova and making us almost praying to see daylight.
The small towns we passed through the next day were picturesque. We had a memorable time sightseeing. Then it came time to find a real motel and rest from our busy day.
Murphy was on hand, eager to assist. Due to the fact that half the population was celebrating in motels that weekend, the only place we could find was an ancient hotel in an equally ancient, one-horse town.
“I remember this place,” my husband said. “Our work crew stayed here once.”
It looked like something from an 1880s western movie set. The front desk was staffed by an elderly man who led us up a set of wide steps. The ratty carpet on the steps probably looked good—in 1910, when it was new. That should have been our first clue that Murphy had arrived ahead of us. But we were desperate to rest somewhere besides our car.
The clerk showed us to our room, unlocking our door with a large, old-timey key ring-- like sheriffs used in jails a hundred years prior. The only available room had one twin-size bed and everyone on the second floor shared the same filthy bathroom. Do you get the idea Murphy was snickering at us?
We had to admit, the room was unique by modern standards. There was a transom (a little window) above the door, and it was stuck open. That made it easy to hear the mice creeping along the hallway.
We said, “Someday we can look back on this and laugh.” That day finally arrived-several decades later.