The annual family outing to the Twin Cities was held once again. Through the years, we have always stayed at the same hotel, which is located near the sites and events that are usually visited during the family weekend. And once again, I asked for Room #440 which is adjoined to two other rooms.

While waiting for the “kids” and grandkids to arrive, I decided to do some shopping alone, I’ve always preferred to shop alone as I can look at what I want without feeling guilty having someone else not being interested in what I’m browsing through.

My plan was to return to the hotel room about two hours later. My shopping trip was not very fruitful, and I returned to the hotel with no bags in hand. My husband would be pleased at the money I saved.

Getting off the elevator on the fourth floor, I stopped in my tracks as everything looked so different. There were no long hallways of hotel rooms. Various shops and kiosks were scattered throughout a large open area where people mingled. With my mouth hanging open in awe, I walked slowly through the area and discovered that the hotel rooms were now spattered between various shops. In some spaces there were one, two or three rooms, but no longer in a long row.

So where was my room? Looking back at the elevator, I walked a bit further to where I thought my room would be. The doors were the same design, but there were no room numbers on the doors. The numbers were written in ink on masking tape that was stuck above each door. I was astonished at this tacky temporary signage. But I really became confused to see that the room numbers all had four digits starting with 22. Why 22? There aren’t 22 floors in the hotel!

I began asking people what happened and where is room 440? Many of the people, including hotel staff people, ignored me as if I wasn’t even there. Was I, the frustrated blonde, beginning to lose it?

I saw people going through two double doors. I followed them to find that I had entered a chapel, and the people were going there for a service. I then proceeded to an entrance door but didn’t want to go outside as it was raining. But I’m on the fourth floor! Why is there a door to the outside? It was at this point I was beginning to panic!

There were women dressed in Roaring ‘20s costumes sipping drinks and having a good time at a tall table. I was sure they could help me.

“Excuse me, but I’m unable to find my hotel room. Could one of you help me?” I asked, adding that my horrendous experience in seeking my room would make a good column for the Senior Perspective. To my surprise, one woman was familiar with the publication. A gal dressed in a green sequin dress, quickly replied, “Well, let’s see what we can do. There’s a hotel staff person taking a nap on the floor over in the corner, so let’s check with him.” With her pointed toe spiked heels, she kicked the young man in the leg and shouted, “Wake up! This hotel guest needs to find her room!”

Rubbing his sore leg, the man slowly got up and said he would go to the front desk and ask. I looked at my watch, and the time was 7:10 p.m. Oh my! My family must be wondering where I am as we were supposed to go for supper together. They will be so mad at me! I had been gone for four hours rather than two, and they couldn’t get ahold of me as I left my cell phone in the hotel room.

My patience ran out. I slammed my hand on the table, threw my head back, closed my eyes, and screamed, “Just find my room!”

I opened my eyes to find myself staring at the digital clock next to my bed. It was 7:10 a.m. What??!! I was at home in my own bed! This entire episode at the hotel was a dream! I turned over to find my husband awake. I told him that I just had the weirdest dream, and it would make a good column. Once I was up, I wrote notes about my mental escapade so that I could use it in this column. Why is it that we remember the details of some dreams and not others?

Whatever dream you have, I hope they are sweet ones!