Finally, you’re on a long needed vacation in a beautiful, warm country separated from all the little worries of your life. After sleeping in and enjoying a nice breakfast, you decide to head poolside to soak up some sun. Surprisingly, the pool area seems relatively empty for 10am. You should have no trouble finding a chair! Except, every chair you pass has a towel or magazine occupying it, and, considering there are only five people in the pool, you realize that Lounge Chair Hogs are saving these chairs for later in the day. Not wanting to cause any trouble, you set up your towel on the poolside pavement and observe from your ‘relaxing’ position that only a few people eventually come to use their saved chairs. The rest of the chairs-chairs you could have lounged in long before their ‘owners’ came for them-remain unused for the better part of a day.
This seems to be a far too common occurrence at resorts. These Lounge Chair Hogs wake up at the crack of dawn and rush to the pool area. Armed with towels, books, and whatever else they deem can be left alone for hours on end, they get to work claiming chairs that they may or may not need later in the day. Then, like the Grinch who stole Christmas, they slink back to their hotel room with a satisfied smirk before everyone else wakes up to a disappointing display.
And they may never return to these chairs. But, they are the self proclaimed rightful owner of that chair (or row of chairs) and anyone who challenges them will face their wrath! Seriously, I have witnessed people get into verbal and physical altercations over chairs they weren’t exactly using. In my opinion, I don’t think a chair is worth it, which is why I just brood from a distance rather than take it.
Though, in my fantasy world, I have dreamed of placing their stuff beside the chair and relaxing the day away. Then, when they show up hours later, I smile at them and say I’ve kept a watchful eye on their stuff. When they demand I give them back their chair, I politely inform them I have actually been using it for the past few hours. Of course, I wouldn’t do this because I’m not a very confrontational person but then again in my fantasy world people would have the common courtesy to not wake up at 6am to reserve chairs for the late afternoon.
These Lounge Chair Hogs have created a paradox of sorts. People who weren’t able to get chairs because people woke up early to save them then wake up early the next day to reserve chairs. It becomes a mentality of “Well if people are going to be selfish, I better do it too so I can have a spot!” The courteous people, who just want a chair when they need it are left with an even lower chance of finding a relaxing spot.
So, what’s the solution? Don’t wake up at 6am to claim a chair, enjoy a relaxing morning where you have no place to be! I doubt everyone will be on board with this solution though. My second solution is having a Chair Etiquette Squad that will greet the Lounge Chair Hogs at 6am and cheerfully inform them that they cannot leave their possessions unattended for more than 60 minutes. That way, the rest of us who are still asleep and dreaming of lounging poolside, will have a chance at claiming the perfect spot. Or, at the very least, we won’t be left brooding on the concrete.