Friday, March 26, 2010

I'm Randy, let me in

I was finishing up a Natchez mystery last night, The Turning Angel by Greg Iles. In it, he mentions the Eola Hotel:

At seven stories, the Eola Hotel is the tallest building in Natchez. Built in 1927, the year of the great flood, the Eola has weathered booms and bust to find itself on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Eola has such a strong place in my childhood memories -- it was our grand hotel -- that when I got married, even though I was poor, I wanted to spend a couple of nights there with my new British husband, Mel.

I was telling him how gracious and refined the South was, and the Eola was a fine representation of that tradition. It had been totally refurbished when we got married in late 1985, so Mel was suitably impressed when he stepped into the grand lobby:

We were asleep that first night when we were disturbed by a man banging on the door next to ours and shouting:

"I'm Randy. Let me in!"

As the man continued to shout and pound on the door, Mel observed that the South didn't seem so refined if you could just shout out to someone in public that you were horny and wanted sex and then try to force your way into their room. (No one is named Randy in England. It's unheard of. Maybe someone is named Randolph, but it's never shortened to Randy. Randy means you want to have sex with someone -- it's an adjective describing your current state of mind.)

I laughed when I realized that Mel didn't understand that this man's name was Randy. The shouting and beating of the door continued, and we started to worry, so we called down to the lobby to get someone to intercede.

The next morning, we opened our door to find the door of the next room had been totally smashed in.

"So much for Southern politeness and refinement," Mel observed.


Casey Ann said...

I love this story!

tombarnes said...

Any word on whether or not the Eola was actually sold? Bob Dean supposedly sold the hotel, but I thought I heard that the sale was never finalized. The Eola needs a bit of care these days.