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My dad was going to be driving across country and and staying at my cousin’s house down in the Pittsburgh area. He wasn’t going to be able to make up to the Rochester, NY area, but we still wanted to see him, so we planned to head down to Pittsburgh. There wasn’t room for us to stay at my cousins house. We also wanted to take our dog, but we had been out of town just the previous weekend, and we didn’t want to have to stick her in the kennel again. She likes being at the kennel once in a while, but if we take her there multiple times in a short period, then she seems to not be as happy about going there.
So I search around online for pet friendly motels or dog friendly motels. I found a couple sites that seemed to be dedicated to listing these (petswelcome.com & dogfriendly.com). Unfortunatly they weren’t super as easy to use as say Orbitz.
I found a bunch of hotels/motels that allowed dogs, but some had non-refundable deposits of up to $100! A non-refundable deposit of $100? That is frigging expensive! Or they had straight out fees for the dogs. Motel 6 seemed to be the cheapest and most dog friendly. They didn’t have an extra charge for the dog. You just needed to declare the dog when registering. The rules for dogs and other pets were pretty common sense. They wanted the dog to be quiet, not damage anything, and not to be left in the room alone, stuff like that. I went on to the Motel 6 website and easily booked a room.
Our stay at the Motel 6 was decent. I was a little bummed that they didn’t have free wi-fi. But as far as bringing our dog, there were no issues at all.

For the last two years, I have flown to Las Vegas to spend a week with my dad, and to run the Las Vegas Marathon. There has been much doubt this year as to whether the Las Vegas Marathon would even happen due to the financial state of the company that runs it. So I have waited to see what was going to happen. I had kind of kept it in my head that if the race didn’t happen, I could fly out and do one of the other races that my friends do, and still spend a week with my dad. I have been watching flights to see if I can find any cheap air fares. But now with economy, and the stock market taking a dive, it looks like I am no going to make it to Las Vegas this year at all. Right now I have way too much credit card debt, and I am still paying for my wife’s college tuition. The Las Vegas trip will just cost too much for me right now. The costs with include, air fare, rental car, hotel in Las Vegas for a night or two, parking at local airport, marathon registration, food, and who knows what else.
Oh well. I am going to miss my friends, and miss the Las Vegas Marathon. As we have gotten closer, it look as if the race actually will happen, though it will like be much smaller than the previous few years. I will hopefully get back to Las Vegas next year.

I have been watching for cheaper air fares to Las Vegas in December. Today I got an email from Travelocity. It was one of their Farewatcher things that I had signed up for a while back. I have pretty much stopped using Travelocity because their site is extremely user-unfriendly. But the email subject read Rochester to Las Vegas from $198+ RT. That is a great price! I clicked the link and it opened a window. There were various airlines listed. The first one was Northwest and it showed the price as $197.40+. The next one was American Airlines for which the price was $227.40. I personally don’t care that much what airline. I want the cheapest price. So I clicked Northwest to check out the $197.40+ price. It showed a calendar. I clicked December 2nd. After it spent some time processing, it grayed out December 2nd. As well as December 1st and a couple other dates.
Well if these weren’t available, why did it show them to me in the first frigging place? I clicked December 3rd. Now it would let me choose a return date. SO I chose December 11th. I gave me a single itinerary going to Vegas. Then it displayed a single itinerary back from Vegas. So I chose that. Now it displayed the price. $287. $287???? What happened to the $197 price? Geez, I can get the $287 price from Orbitz with a lot less hassle, and it will give me a lot more latitude in choose different flights and airlines.
This just reminded me why I stopped using Travelocity. Pretty much every other travel site I have used has been easier to use, and has given as good or better prices.

I was going to be travelling to Toronto to run a half marathon with a Canadian friend of mine. I asked her where she would staying, and she said she didn’t know. Her brother worked for some company where he could get discount rates at hotels. He was going to get her a cheap room. I asked if he could get me a cheap room too. It turned out could. We ended up getting a great deal on rooms right next to each other at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel.
My wife and I arrived on Friday evening, and pulled up to the entrance. They had valet parking. I asked if they had a parking garage, and the guy said no, but that there was one across the street.
He also mentioned the valet parking was like $40, and the garage was like $20. Um…that was a no brainer. I parked in the garage. The garage is connected to the hotel by an under-street tunnel which makes it easy to go back and forth.
Our room was on the 11th floor. It was nice and clean and had a great view of the marathon start and finish area.
The hotel has a great 25 yard indoor/outdoor pool. I enjoyed swimming my laps in this pool. It started raining a little bit while I was swimming, and every time I went into the outside part, I would feel rain drops hitting my back. This was an interesting effect. There is also a fitness room with really nice gym quality equipment. But they charged for it’s use.
There is a small shopping area under the hotel which includes a food court.
The hotel doesn’t have WiFi, but does have wired internet connections in the rooms. But they charge for the internet access. I wasn’t able to locate any free WiFi connections in the area, at least not from our 11th floor room, and with my laptop. Maybe a lower room, or with a laptop that has a stronger antenna.
We very much enjoyed our stay at this hotel. I would love to stay here again next time we are in Toronto if we could get the same rate.
Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel is located at 123 Queen Street West • Toronto, Ontario M5H 2M9. thier phone is (416) 361-1000.




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