Grape Jelly, Hockey and Housekeeping
When it's time for hockey tournament season in Minnesota, hotels in cities with sizable rinks look forward to accommodating the teams and their families. Hotel housekeepers all have stories of rooms so badly trashed over a weekend of tournament play and celebration that one room can take an hour to thoroughly clean.
Just to be fair, not all teams make huge messes. One coach handed his players garbage bags at the end of their stay and instructed them to bag up all of their trash. Unfortunately, that is the exception rather than the rule.
I have been a hotel housekeeper for only seven months. My initiation into hockey tournament season occurred about a month ago.
One of the rooms was not so bad until I went into the bathroom to clean the tub and toilet. Dark purple globs of grape jelly had been deposited beside the toilet and on the ceramic toilet rim. Streaks of grape jelly decorated the side of the bath tub, the tile wall and the toilet seat. If I didn't know better, I would think a budding Van Gogh was trying his technique using the bathroom as his canvas. That mess, at least, was easy to scrub away even though I had to check every surface of the bathroom to make sure no telltale sticky purple smears remained.
The next morning, as I went to fill my coffee cup I found our jar of grape jelly on top of our coffee maker with a message affixed to it. Our 18-year-old daughter wrote “Beware the grape jelly monster that haunts your dreams” and since then has delighted in offering me sandwiches made with the stuff.
I may never look at a jar of grape jelly in quite the same way ever again.