On very short notice, I was gone for four days recently on a work trip. Went to Las Vegas for a convention. Personally, I've never wanted to visit Las Vegas but that was where I headed.
My plane from Hometown to Nearest-Big-City was cancelled. All of the passengers were loaded on a bus and transported to the Nearest-Big-City. You know what? Life is short. The bus wasn't packed. We all had our own seats. It was dry, warm and there was a bathroom. The only thing we missed out on was the beverage service had we been on the plane. There were passengers complaining about the inconvenience but sometimes I think we should weigh out when to complain and when to zip our lips. Some of "them" had an attitude.
The bus got me to the Nearest-Big-City airport in plenty of time for the next flight. There was just one big thing I had to face. Airport scanning. The only thing that freaks me out about airport scanning is that I have to take my shoes off. Personal confession time....I have stinky feet.
Side Story: I had a favorite pair of dress shoes that I wore almost every day at work. They were comfortable and dressy. They did cause my feet to sweat but the comfort was worth it. One particular day I put those shoes on about 6 a.m. to head off to work and I wore them until I was tucking Kidlet Three into bed around 8:30 p.m. As I lay down in bed with Kidlet to talk about the day and say prayers, I kicked my shoes off and they fell to the floor. Within minutes our Dog was growling. Dog very rarely growls...he barks. This was definitely a growl. I hopped out of bed and turned the bedroom light on to see Dog crouched and posed to jump on my shoes and he was growling at them. I'm pretty sure he thought something had died when he smelled my shoes...and he was growling at them.
I was able to get through airport scanning without anyone around me passing out...from my shoe smell....
The flight from Nearest-Big-City was uneventful and even finding the shuttle to the hotel went fine. I was shuttled to the Bellagio Hotel, where I would be staying and attending the work conference. Nothing had prepared me for the beauty of this hotel. I was totally and thoroughly surprised and overwhelmed when I walked in. In fact, I cried.
All of my life Las Vegas had been touted as the gambling capital, home of the boozers with prostitutes on every corner. Part of this was confirmed when I stepped off the plane and the first thing I saw in the airport was gambling machines!
Yet beauty had never been been used in conjunction with the name Las Vegas. Before I left on this trip I had an atittude. The opportunity to attend the conference was one I was grateful for; but, I was very disappointed that I had to go to Las Vegas. Several times I found myself complaining about that city and wishing I was going anywhere but Las Vegas.
I had an attitude and had made a judgment about something I had no personal experience with.
Standing in the lobby of the Bellagio Hotel with tears streaming down my face, I was overtaken with the beauty. And I found myself saying, "I don't deserve to stay in such a nice place." Immediately, and I mean immediately, God spoke to me in the way He speaks me and He said "you most certainly do deserve to stay here."
The physical beauty of my accommodations was echoed in the beauty of the people that worked there. Every single person I enountered during those four days was gracious, personable and so willing to help. My keycard didn't work in the hotel room door. I was on the 15th floor and it had taken me 15 minutes to walk from the lobby to my room and then my door wouldn't open! But there was bellman in the hallway and he saw what was going on. He picked up a hallway phone and reported my dilemma and less than 10 minutes later I had working keycards with extreme apologies for my inconvenience.
I am so sorry for the attitude I had about Las Vegas. The small slice of the city that I experienced in those four days certainly didn't support my pre-trip judgments.
How many other circumstances or areas in my life have I pre-judged or had an atittude about? Way too many, I'm afraid. I'm asking God to change me in that area. To challenge my attitudes.
Anyone want to go to Las Vegas with me next time? I really want to go back now. Serious!