matron whose iShuffle dangles from her neck along with a couple of diamond
solitaires on gold chains. Don’t get me wrong: I like this matron. She could be
my friend, given enough time and Singapore dollars. The shabby-chic lobby has
ashtrays. Yes, they may be used as ashtrays. The 20th-floor conference room
opens out to a veranda with more ashtrays, and potted palms, and a charming view
of the city. My room comes with a broadband connection and many buttons that
perform necessary hotel functions such as lighting and curtain control. The
curtains are floral, substantial, and overloaded with fringe. In the bathroom, a
gold sticker tells you the toilet paper roll is fresh. I feel like a barbarian
whenever I see that. It must be an achievement for human civilization when
toilet paper comes with gold stickers.
Next to the broadband connection
(highway robbery at S$15 for an hour, but it’s better than other hotels I’ve
stayed in that offer only 24-hour rates), the bedsheets are my favorite hotel
treat. They are soft, smooth and white, and there are layers and layers of them,
in that glorious abundance of fabric that I can never achieve at home. I slip
underneath the blankets and the day tiptoes away.
This is about as Bacchanalian as I can
get nowadays. It is more than enough.