Where to start... There was a huge ice storm in west TX as we drove to Dallas from California on Dec 29, 2014. We are from Alaska, we were fine, but so many others were retarded on the roads. The Hilton only had doubles left for $180 cause of the rush of stranded people. We are from Alaska, we were fine, but so many others were retarded on the roads. We made the bad decision to check for other cheaper places nearby first.
When we called here, they said "yeah we have rooms, just come in. It's $125 with tax." and hung up. I knew immediately this was odd since they didn't ask for any information from us to hold a room. It was close to midnight and we just needed 5-6 hours of sleep to let more people wreck and get off the roads and out of our way.
When we showed up at the place, there was literally no one to be found. I waited for over 15 minutes and kept looking around. Being in security before, I started to notice things that worried me. I told my wife to stay in the car and be ready to call 911.
I found a key card on the floor right in front of the desk. I showed it to the security camera (horribly placed) and started to carefully check for signs of foul play. The card was a master key card. I was literally able to check any room in the complex. I went into the back office and looked, saw a possible open purse with no phone or wallet identifiers visible (it was wide open).
I then checked the bathrooms, all 3 floors : basement - no locked rooms and a chapel, main floor - including all security and storage rooms (most weren't even locked or closed), and the top floor - again every storage, security, AND locker rooms (again most were wide open).
On the top floor I found a cleaning cart abandoned in the hall, 3 rooms wide open for cleaning with lights on, even 1 room with the vacuum and dust buster and dirty sheets blocking the bedroom door. Now I was really getting worried.
While checking the bottom floor, I saw the back gate was locked open so anyone could enter without a hard key. There was a Denny's on the far side of the parking lot, so maybe they went for food. I found a computer room wide open (OP computer room), the CB radio was set to L042-042 and was also empty.
I went back to my wife, told her I had still seen no one in the building. I told her I would check Denny's and then we call the police. I took her knife (I grew up around gangs and knew how to use it) and finished my check.
While returning from Denny's I saw an unmarked white chevy van pull up. I saw 3 guys jump out and head into the side door. I had my phone out to call 911, took note of the CVN - 4510 plate, and tried to get an ID of the 3 guys.
This is when I saw 3 guys in coveralls going into the OP room to get on computers. I calmly asked if they had seen the front desk clerk. "Nope, we just got here." There were wearing OP railroad tags.
I walked back past the desk, saw it was empty, and went to tell my wife. I started to dial 911 as I walked back inside.
There behind the counter sat a older, african american male chewing on some food. He acted like he'd been there the whole time. He was greying, had long dreadlocks, and a silver and turquoise tear drop earring in both ears.
When I asked where he was, "Oh we get a lot of OP Railroad in and I have to cater to them. I only stepped out for a second." When I saw the small cell phone he held, I asked why he didn't answer when I called a few minutes ago (which I had to see if the call was forwarded. It wasn't, it just rang and rang.) "I was in the back office, must not have heard it." (You could hear it ring over the whole first floor.)
He hand wrote a receipt and charged our card. I asked if the computer system was down. "No we don't use it for rooms." I took the card he handed us, walked into security view and placed the Master on the counter. I just wanted to sleep at this point. I also ran my card through the office door as we passed, guess what - it turned green. Inside the office I had seen a post it note on the wall that told everyone to STOP giving out master keys and use the room numbers, sighed Ahrida(?) . I suck with names.
With all of these things running through my mind, I failed at getting any sleep. This effectively wasted one of the main reasons to stop for the night. The room was awful, bed was uncomfortable, and the bathroom still had a dirty towel under the sink.
The next morning as we lumbered out, I asked who the manager was. I was told the name I had read on the post-it note. The master key from before was still on the counter, as well. We took our breakfast vouchers next door to Denny's for breakfast. The site had no facilities for food, and I'm glad of that.
If this is the typical setting for this place, I will gladly set fire to it if they need the insurance money. As long as they don't rebuild it.
I'll post pictures of things as I looked for a person. In all, there was no person visible for almost an hour.
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