Thursday, February 23, 2012

SkatePark of Tampa - Day 3

It's almost a wrap.

With one afternoon left before our flight home, we are back at SPoT for a final session, despite Sk8terdude's hacking cough, possible low fever, and probable ear infection.  ("No, really, Mom!  I swear I'm - hack, hack, cough, cough - just fine to skate.)

I'm sure Sk8terdude has a headache and I know I do.  After two days with the music turned down (thank you, thank you, Alex), today I am cursed not only with loud music but also with an interminable soundcheck.  (Dude, the speakers are working.  You can stop shouting "check, check, check, 1-2, check, check, check" into the microphone!)

We're only going to be here for two more hours.  Can't this wait?  (Okay, I know the world - especially the skateboarding world - doesn't revolve around me.  But wouldn't it be great for me if it did???)  Even the guy delivering Red Bull looked annoyed...

Admittedly, I'm a little cranky.  Not only was I up half the night thanks to Sk8terdude's coughing, just as he settled down, the guy in the NEXT room started snoring and, no joke, I couldn't sleep because it was so loud!  As a result, I've given up on getting any work done today, but I thought I would make an attempt at a wrap-up post about lessons we've learned in Tampa.

1.  When calling ahead to ask if there is a parent lounge, be specific.  I should have asked if there are actual CHAIRS, rather than a picnic table.  My back is killing me!  (Yeah, I'm getting old.)

2.  When calling ahead to ask if there is a parent lounge, ask if it's temperature controlled.  (You would think I had learned that lesson after freezing my *(Y&(*^ off in New Jersey, which I wrote about here, but apparently I didn't.)  Fortunately, the weather has been wonderful and the fans, noisy as they are, keep this room reasonably comfortable.  But if it were another 5° warmer, I would have been in trouble.

OMG - I JUST REMEMBERED THAT I HAVE A PAIR OF FLENTS (those little squishy purple earplugs) IN MY PURSE.  It's still really loud in here, but that's MUCH better!!!

3.  Always carry earplugs!

4.  Rely on sources other than the skatepark when looking for lodging.  SPoT has a great list of hotels in the area on their website.  And if I were a 20-something guy looking to spend a few days in the area, I might have been happy to stay in any of those hotels.  Fortunately, I logged into TripAdvisor and asked on the Tampa forum and was warned that this might not be the neighborhood to stay in as a mom travelling with a child.  I'm glad I listened.  We stayed out in Brandon, which was an easy 15 minute drive and a world away from SPoT:  lots of restaurants, shopping, and a Starbucks all around the corner from our hotel!

5.  Always ask about the ingredients in the sandwich bread before ordering lunch.  (Okay, that one might not help the rest of you.)

6.  Be prepared to spend money.  Sk8terdude is going home with a SPoT deck and hat to add to his collection:

Thanks for everything, Tampa!  We had a great trip.

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