As the saying goes: “If these walls could talk .” They can’t, of course. Or so I thought.
Until I stumbled onto something during a stay at a B&B in San Diego.
The Little Italy Inn has a long history. The building dates back 100 years, when tuna fishermen hung out there. It’s been renovated with all kinds of old-world touches. So I was already drifting into the past before I came across a telling artifact.
A little diary on the nightstand. At first glance, the usual marketing gimmick — get the guests involved. Just another guest register. Who cared?
But as I flipped through the pages, I was amazed. First, in this age of Trip Advisor and Yahoo reviews, that anyone would even take the time and trouble to actually write something longhand. Second, that they would expend the effort to list more than their names and hometowns; that they would actually tell a story or give advice.
Reading scribblings in the diary, in the actual room, on the actual bed, was so intimate. Like they were all there with me, whispering in my ear. I saw them clearly; their words and handwriting style giving away their ages and genders.
No matter that the diary didn’t go back 100 years. It’s still the human condition, regardless of the century.
Java and Jesus: “Four nights in San Diego leave me convinced that Little Italy is the jewel of the town … good food; good coffee; and a faithful, decent Catholic Church down the street (Our Lady of the Rosary.)” ~Dallas, Iceland
Souvenir sex: “What’s up peeps … here in S.D. before moving to Japan … Met some hottie at the bar and we got it on … all over the room … the bed really does creek a lot … I had to get it on with an American [one last time] … I apologize for the next person who stays in here and reads this … Hope you enjoy your stay cause I did.” ~Firewalker
Ya gotta have friends: “Me and my two girlfriends had an amazing time as well (w/o all the “bed noise” … We celebrated our friends bday with twinkies lit with candles … enjoy your stay and treasure the moments you’re sharing with your loved one, while miles away from people you can’t normally stand!” ~Asya, Ovsana, Nana
Tat’s right: “I made my trip from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (the prairie) in Canada. I came up here for a short stay just to get tatooed … The inn is very cozy and home-like… the location was perfect from the airport. Thnx!” ~Jennifer-Lee, Canada
Family affair: “Wha’d up Socal! Just here chillin’ for my little bro’s B-Day. (21, yeah, baby.) We took the Sea-Doo out to Mission Bay .. hit up [the] pizza place … my dad loves it. Anyways, have fun sleeping in these cute rooms and comfy beds. We’re off to Pacific Beach to get a tan on our bodies.” ~DD
Pretty patriotic: “I thoroughly enjoyed my stay in this beautiful home … San Diego is a wonderful town. The food in Little Italy is a tribute to the Italian immigrants … I loved the tour of the USS Midway. It is truly an asset for this country.” ~Paul, Buffalo
Awed by the big city: “Came from small town Alaska so jets — can’t do anything about those — and traffic take some adjustment … a lovely place, and right around the corner from [an art-supply store.]” ~Beatrice; Juneau, Alaska
And this in pencil:
Wish you were here: “I was in town for an academic conference – National Communication Association. My wife stayed home in Atlanta, so I dined alone … this place is a gem. I have never been to San Diego before, but if I come back — this time with my wife — we’ll stay here.” ~Rick