Sometimes, reservations can't be transferred to someone else, anyway. It will depend upon "the fine print".
I apologize if anyone was offended by my reference to the California State Governor with my nickname for him. From now he will be referred to by "our governor". So many of my friends call him that (or another "funny" nickname) that I have gotten into a habit of saying AND writing that name.
I agree with you, as far as the 100% mask compliance. I hear about the loss of life, and I am truly sad for the families. The only person I've known that has had the virus and NOT survived, was our school's night custodian. Fortunately when we were all on campus this past spring, he WAS wearing a mask and no one else has contracted this stuff. Our diesel mechanic has had the disease -- they didn't even know what it was back then, but he later donated blood platelets at the Red Cross and they found the antibodies and were able to identify what laid him low for 6 weeks. He's our age (young 60s). We still think my husband had a light case of it, in February after a trip to Disneyland, but he hasn't been tested for it OR the antibodies.I would certainly prefer that you had found 100% mask compliance out there. Just about everyday I learn about another friend with family members in ICU with Covid-19 or those who have already passed. I don't see any likely developments to aid control of this virus, in the USA, until sometime next Spring.
Our family doctor recommended to stay out of crowds, wash your hands a lot for 20 seconds (sing "Happy Birthday to You" 2x or "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" to yourself as you scrub), wear a mask, and keep your hands off your face. Stay 6 ft from others.
Since I didn't post any questions before this trip, let me tell you what we ended up leaving OUT of this trip:
* Colorado Springs - Garden of the Gods (limiting people; no reservations available), North Pole (opened just before we were there, to large amounts of people, then closed again right after we left, then opened again), the Museum of Air and Space in Denver (closed), the train museum in Denver (closed).
* Kansas - wildlife conservation area open to public (too darn HOT)
* Missouri - White Haven, the home of Julia Dent Grant (open but in an area full of COVID), Grant's Farm (still closed), Arrow Rock State Park (museum still closed). Wineries (not allowing tasting, and our favorite stopped allowing one to bring your own picnic lunch.) Hiking around the MO River (too darn HOT).
* Other: Nebraska: Pony Express Station and several Oregon Trail sites. Wyoming: Sacajawea's supposed gravesite, Yellowstone. See above why we didn't go to Yellowstone, and everything between Missouri and Yellowstone got canceled as well.
Pretty much, we drove 4200 miles round trip to visit family and look at homes and areas to live in after I retire. We felt safer driving, than flying, which is much like many others are feeling. We just had more time to do the trip.
Last edited by DonnaR57; 07-25-2020 at 11:25 AM. Reason: corrected grammar
So, from a long-time RTA Contributing Writer member who seems to be too shy to post his own posts (hint: he has been a member since 2011 -- so you know it is not me...)
What he wants to know is:
* Did you find public restrooms easily available on the trip? And, if so, do you have any comments about conditions you found them to be in?
* Did you undertake any sanitation techniques at any of the motels you stayed at? Either before or after your stay?
Public restrooms - I should preface this with a statement that we carry a camping potty in the back of our truck. This is especially helpful in certain situations, such as not finding a truck stop or rest area when you really need one. This came in handy several times on our trip, either because one wasn't available or the line was long.
Almost all rest areas were open that were not in construction areas. I think we found two closed because of construction, one in Colorado and one in Kansas. Rest area restrooms -- well, they're in about the same condition. I have always been a bit picky about those, and actually prefer truck stop restrooms, particularly those of Love's, Pilot, TA or Flying J. The latter have always been cleaner than interstate rest areas. Found myself using those if I could.
Lodging Cleanliness - Hubby and I have been staying in the mid-range hotels in the Choice realm for a few years. This time, we found them as clean as usual, if not moreso. It surprised us to find that these properties DID put out the little bottles of shampoo, lotion, wrapped bars of soap, the coffeemaker (which we never use), wrapped plastic and cardboard cups. I always rinse the bottom of the bathtub/shower before I step foot in one anyway. I did not feel the need to use any of the cleaning materials that I'd brought with me, at any property we stayed at. The 4 Choice properties we stayed at, were gleaming! Same with Margaritaville (Tan-Tar-A) at the Lake.
What we DID do, that we ALWAYS do, is bring our own pillows. I don't like putting my head on pillows that others have drooled on -- never have -- even with clean pillowcases. We traveled with two pillows each. Another reason we bring our own pillows is that I can't do certain types of pillows. Some properties brag on their "feather" pillows. To me, that means a miserable night with a major allergy attack.
I noticed that every property we stayed at, made the bed slightly differently. There was the usual bottom fitted sheet, then the loose sheet, a blanket or comforter, and another sheet on top, followed by the thing on the bottom of the bed because some folks insist on putting their shoes on the bed. I'd not seen the extra sheet on the top before, but I didn't mind it a bit!
The other property we stayed at for 9 nights had one more policy in place: housekeeping did not visit your room unless they were invited. Normally, when you stay in a hotel for more than 1 night, Housekeeping comes in to give you new towels, makes the bed, runs the vacuum (maybe), empties the trash. But this year, all hotels had this new policy, but we didn't really notice it except at Margaritaville (the 9-night place) AKA Tan-Tar-A. We requested trash service, and they came in, but that's ALL they did was service the trash cans. We asked for new towels, they grabbed the old and gave us clean ones. If you didn't want them in the room, they'd make arrangements for you to leave the trash cans or dirty towels outside the door. I not only didn't mind this, it was much less worrisome.
Sanitation procedures - We kept our own handsoap in the hotel room, which we carried with us in a plastic bag (in case of high elevation "burps"). We brought along hand sanitizer and hand sanitizer wipes - the liquid stuff stayed in my purse and got brought out constantly, and the wipes were in the truck and mostly used after fueling.
After visiting any store, the lobby of the motel, a restaurant, the restroom facility, out would come the hand sanitizer. Yes, even after the restroom when I'd wash my hands - especially if I had to touch the door handle on the way out of the restroom and/or the building. At every single place we went, you'd have to touch something - a door, the credit card reader, your purchase, your own credit card after someone else had handled it -- so out came the hand sanitizer. I think I refilled our little bottle at least twice and went through two packages of the hand sanitizer wipes, plus some baby wipes that I'd brought.
We also do not use motel TV's. I think the last time we had the TV on in a motel room was when our kids were little and we were stuck inside during a major storm. The TV remote is probably one of the dirtiest places in a motel room. If you use one, pick it up with a wet wipe and placei t in a brand new Ziploc bag before you use it. I had to move the remote out of the way in three motels, so I grabbed a tissue to handle it, then hand-sanitized afterward.
Hope this helps Mr. or Ms. Shy about asking these things. I'll be more detailed about restrooms if need be, but I think you get my gist! I will also add that hubby and I rarely get sick from the hotels on our trips. Coming home sick from a road trip is very, very rare. More common is to come home from an air trip or from Disneyland, sick.
Excellent and interesting responses.
I've suggested to Bruce that it's time for him to respond "in-person" --
Absolutely, I welcome the questions.
More on restrooms - In my previous response, I focused on rest areas and truck stop/travel centers. We did find that a few restrooms in other places, such as department stores and some fast food places, were closed. Those had signs up explaining that the restrooms were closed "until further notice", and "thank you for your understanding." This is inconvenient, to be sure. I know in our area of California, it is common to find the store restrooms closed. I believe this stems from two things: local and state health department regulations, and the supply chain. One store in our area came right out and stated, it was hard to keep toilet paper in their restrooms because folks kept stealing it, so they locked the restrooms.
Stealing TP seems pretty low-handed.