In the heart of London's city center, an inexperienced, wet behind the ears, hotel manager almost drowns in corporate realities of the HappyVale Hotel, a property and business bequeathed to him from his Irish mother. Problems, chaos, mayhem and corrupt realities all play a hilarious but troublesome part in this recount of the human traffic that graced the steps of the HappyVale Hotel and the corporate obstacles that swamped a naive hotel manager that was way out of his depth and unable to tread water in a hospitality dream that was never his own that become a financial nightmare.
A beloved building that had been decorated with a family’s love, hard work, countless memories and efforts, gradually became a disorganised mess and a rope of responsibility that hung around the hotel owner's neck and so when a wave of financial destitution threatened to roll up and crash straight through the hotel's door, there was no dam wall of recovery to protect either the building or the naive hotel manager and owner. Saturated in mishaps, steeped in chaos and forced to walk a corporate tightrope between corporate responsibility and hilarious, dramatic, nonsensical shenanigans, this is one hotel manager's tale of the obstacles he faced and the hurdles he had to overcome, some of which he failed to leap over and crashed straight into. Unfortunately, when the high tide of financial failings, the jagged rocks of bureaucracy and a series of disastrous events, finally shipwrecked the hotel's financial boat and sabotaged the hotel owner's sincere wishes, hopeful intentions and often misguided attempts to honor his mother's legacy and her last wishes, there was absolutely no chance recovery and nothing could be salvaged from the wreckage of heartbreak that he sadly, had to leave behind.
This book is loosely based on a true story and the real experiences of a hotel manager and was written on their behalf.
Despite the lack of financial rewards however, my mother had somehow kept her spirits high, her hotel full and she had even managed to avoid the jagged rocks of financial destitution, although the tide of poverty had threatened to rise up against the hotel's door many times and to sink our family's boat. ~ Jill Thrussell
Since Camden had always been such a densely populated, inner city area, a lot of human traffic had flowed through the borough and through the doors of the Happyvale Hotel but that continuous stream of human traffic hadn't seemed to present much of a challenge to my mother, who had always appeared to stride across life as if she had been formed and built from steel and clothed in metal armor with a shield of iron attached. ~ Jill Thrussell
Sometimes even now, I still wonder what became of some of the guests that had left a memorable footprint in my memories and a distinct impression imprinted upon my mind during my mother's reign over Happyvale Hotel once they had left my mother's walls permanently behind because they had truly been such an integral part of my youth. ~ Jill Thrussell
Apparently, in every city and port that Ralphie the Rogue had visited on the crest of his roguish wave, from what he had often related to those around him and I had managed to overhear, there had been a lady in waiting and usually more than one because they had rarely waited around long enough for his usually quite brief returns to solid land. ~ Jill Thrussell
By the time Ralphie had usually, finally returned to the city in question for a second round of skinny dips in each ladies sea of passion, the women had usually moved on to far greener love pastures and much brighter, more solid romantic prospects and they had even entered into committed relationships with other men that had been far more accessible to them and men that would have given Ralphie a skinful, if he'd even tried to have another roll in the hay with them. ~ Jill Thrussell
Much like a trophy of bravery that had been earned at sea, Ralphie the Rogue had orally displayed his sexual conquests to any adult male that would listen but in this instance, his display case had been his mouth and his trophies had been the women that he had managed to convince to hop into bed with him and since I had lacked such highly desirable interactions with the female species at the time, I'd been extremely impressed by his masculine prowess and seemingly, plentiful sexual achievements. ~ Jill Thrussell
Sometimes on Saturday afternoons, when I had taken a wander out into the garden at the rear of the hotel, I'd often found Mavis seated upon a wooden tree stump that had barely stood taller than the weeds that had surrounded it and she had related some of her memories to me about the life that she had once lived and shared by her late husband's side. ~ Jill Thrussell
After that day, very sadly, Mavis had simply never ever actually returned and deep down inside, I still feel that some part of me had left with her that day because no other guest during the time of my mother's ownership or even my own had ever touched my heart in quite the way that Mavis had. ~ Jill Thrussell
Guests had flowed through the hotel's doors and hallways as often as the wine had flowed down the back of my throat in those early days and some of them had literally shocked the hell out of me as I had struggled to step up to not only my mother's wishes but also to my new life as a hotel owner and manager as I'd started to accept the hotel that had been handed to me that had quite unexpectedly, actually become my sole responsibility. ~ Jill Thrussell
Sadly however, I had quickly learnt that my saunter down the lane of supposed grandeur into what had initially seemed like a potential oasis of prosperity had been nothing more than a wade into a very murky swamp of heavy responsibilities and as I had stumbled deeper into that swamp, it had almost seemed as if it had wanted to drag me down into its stressful depths and then consume me. ~ Jill Thrussell
Noble intentions however, as I had rapidly discovered hadn't provided a lifeline to absolute ignorance and that had been the first lesson that I had very quickly learnt because I had truly been way out of my depth and quite unable to reach a shore of meaningful or even remotely satisfactory redepemtion. ~ Jill Thrussell
Every day at the hotel had been filled with drama whilst I had managed the establishment because without my mother's firm, experienced hand at the helm, absolute chaos had absolutely prevailed, due to my lack of skills, total ignorance, absence of experience and very limited knowledge. ~ Jill Thrussell
Each guest it had seemed, had brought along their own bag of troubles with them when they had initially arrived at the hotel which they had then quickly unpacked and as they had offloaded those problems straight onto my shoulders, each problematic issue had landed straight on my doorstep and I'd been expected to cope with and resolve every single one. ~ Jill Thrussell
A huge worry had definitely lingered inside my mind at the time as I had visually searched Noel's face for answers and further clarity but all that had greeted me had been silence and so that worry had continued to silently somersault around inside the passageways of my mind without even a single hope and without the provision of any kind of comfort to buffer its chaotic turbulence. ~ Jill Thrussell
The sheer cheek and audacity of the strange man's actions had instantly made my blood boil and as I had stood and watched him, every part of me had seethed inside as I'd felt a current of intense anger surge chaotically through my veins which had threatened to spill out of my mouth and explode from my human frame because his brazen, foul nature had completely horrified me and absolutely disgusted me. ~ Jill Thrussell
Luckily, Cherie had managed to capture my attention and distract me from the anger that had surged through my veins like a current of total hatred as much like a cool bucket of water, her presence had extinguished some of the fiery, angry flames inside of me, due to her cheerful disposition which had immediately put me slightly at ease and so a tense smile had somehow, managed to stroll across my face. ~ Jill Thrussell
Somehow, it had transpired, Cherie had been totally immune to this filthy man's outrageous behavior and she had not only challenged him but also grabbed him verbally by the rump and then fully delivered some shots of direct embarassment to his absolutely foul tail and her tactful response to his foulness had definitely amused and pacified me to some extent. ~ Jill Thrussell