How the Other Half Lives

MandDIn my favorite Broadway musical Thoroughly Modern Millie, there’s a song titled How the Other Half Lives. It’s a catchy duet sung in a scene set in a New York hotel lobby where two women of the “Roaring Twenties” meet and converse about their aspirations.

Millie is a struggling but ambitious “modern” trying to work her way up in the world to enjoy the finer things of life. Miss Dorothy is a wealthy heiress bored with her privileged, pampered existence and enthusiastic to experience the gritty life of a working girl. The verses of the song alternate between these two idealizing the other woman’s situation.

In this scenario, I would definitely be Millie. While I’ve been blessed with a life of plenty, I was hardly born with a silver spoon in my mouth and never lived in the lap of luxury—until recently. I got a glimpse of Miss Dorothy’s world and, oh, it’s A-MAZ-ING!

I’m forever spoiled for ordinary life.

A business trip took my cowboy and me to a five-star ranch resort to teach an art workshop. Well, he taught and I assisted—a little. I mean, once things were set up, what could I do? The participants (and instructor) didn’t seem to care for my constructive criticism of their work, so I made myself available to the indulgent resort staff to hone their skills of waiting on me hand and foot.

These zealots were anxious to arrange for anything I needed or wanted in the way of entertainment, refreshment or hydration—all these amenities being top notch. My hand was never without a fresh drink garnished with fruit and a party straw. I was shuttled around in a golf cart or given one to drive myself to my agenda of leisure activities, which included panning for sapphires.

Yep, my souvenir was a little bag of jewels to take home.

Every meal was gourmet, arranged almost too lovely to eat, served in five choreographed courses, and proof that cooking is truly an art form. The fitness center looked too nice to sweat in, but I did. The hot tub was set to the perfect temperature and overlooked a lake. As my sweetie and I snuggled in it one starry night, the moon came up over the mountains—as cued.

It was so picturesque, I completely expected an axe murderer to burst out from the trees and massacre us.

I now know what “turndown service” is. I’ve only ever heard of such opulent perks since the lodging we frequent usually has a number in the name. Each night our suite was set with mood lighting, soft music and stocked with plush robes and slippers laid out. The lofty king-size bed was prepped with pillows fluffed, bedding neatly folded back, and topped with a card and luscious mints.

But, the best part of all was they cleaned up after me. I couldn’t set down or drop anything on any surface without it immediately being cleaned up, hung up or disposed of. I’ve been lying to my children for years telling them there’s no such thing as cleaning fairies, but there is! Shhhh, don’t tell them.

All I can say is, Miss Dorothy is an idiot.

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