Stealing from Hotels or Frugal Girl
Now that I live in Maine, I travel a bit more than in the past and am staying at hotels more. You know the drill. All the wonderful things that are in the hotel bathrooms and on their room service trays. I am also trying to be most cost effective, which some might call frugality. Before my new frugal self, I never took anything home from hotels or restaurants. Ever.
I stayed at the fabulous Ritz in San Francisco a few months ago. We were doing business with them and they comped the room (just in case your first thought is that the Ritz is certainly not on the frugal list). Coincidentally, the Ritz is full of things to take home to be frugal.
Here is a list of what I brought home.
Everything from the bathroom including Q-tips, the shampoo and conditioner, all bars of soap (I opened one and used it both at the sink and in the shower so there were two bars to bring home), two plastic laundry bags from the closet (not sure what they are good for, but whatever), the shoeshine cloth, and (drum roll) seven bottles from the room service cart including three jars of orange marmalade (should I mention I hate marmalade?), one little jar of mayo, one jar of dijon mustard, two jars of strawberry jam (love that and wished I could have used it on my whole wheat toast but I didn’t think an open bottle would be ok to keep without refrigerating so I ate it dry), two bottles of catsup, and last but not least, the shower cap. They had 8 (not kidding) washcloths in the bathroom and I’m sure they wouldn’t have missed one, but I considered that crossing the line to thief, so I didn’t take it.
I was stoked, what a haul. It felt like Christmas.
Then I started to feel guilty. Is that stealing? What do you think the housekeeping department thought of me? Do healthy people do this? Then I started to worry that the bottles wouldn’t get past security. What if security opened my bag after all the bottles went through X-ray and everyone behind me saw that I was a stealer of bottles off the room service tray, and they would think to themelves “Are you kidding me? Who is that awful woman?” And what if stolen bottles from hotels means you get strip searched? Then I realized I better not look nervous or they will pull me over anyway. I was exhausted and guilt ridden by the time I got through security. I actually considered dropping it all off at a homeless shelter in Los Angeles. I’m not kidding. I got a grip and realized that the mind is one sick puppy when you let it go wild.
I unpacked it all when I got home. I think my refrigerator looks really cute with all kinds of little bottles in the door. And, I can’t wait until I have company and can bring them out and put them on the table. Fun. It might have all been worth it.
So, I’m a new frugal-hoarder girl and proud of it. I’m considering picking up sugar packets at restaurants in the future. Is toilet paper out of bathrooms stealing if there is another roll right there and you aren’t leaving the stall with no toilet paper? Ok, I think it is but I’m clueless as to the fine line between frugal girl and robber.