In Search of a Feather Free Bed

By: Loolwa Khazzoom, Founder, Dancing with Pain

July 27th, 2009 • Living with Chronic PainPrint Print

During all the drama trying to get me foam pillows, nobody mentioned to me that there is a mattress pad made out of feathers. I discovered it at about 3 am, when I crawled into the bed. The gal at the desk and the security guard were great sports about it though. They offered to fix up another room for me.

I wasn’t so thrilled about schlepping all my stuff, though, so when I discovered that the mattress pad was not the fly-away feather kind that I once encountered at a super fancy Marriott (the feathers flew all over the place when people came to take the pad away), I said I’d be fine if they could just remove the pad and bring me a fresh set of sheets.

Around that time, I also discovered that the comforter – which I was told was synthetic – was in fact made of down. Oy.

Fortunately I decided to buy a packet of Benadryl before the gift store closed. It was to the tune of $13.00, but if it can keep me from having an allergy attack, it will be worth the cost. Unfortunately my asthma spray is in my bags, and the airline wouldn’t let me retrieve my bags before coming to the hotel. I guess they were already checked onto the flight that left about two hours ago now.

But I was able to make it through the night with a feather comforter in the NY hotel, and I have done the same at Marriotts a number of times, so it’s possible that as long as the comforters are self-contained — ie, they don’t have feathers flying all over the place – and as long as there is a sheet above and under it, I’ll be OK.

Plus the gal from the front desk and the security guard are now vacuuming the mattress top. They are totally sweet and going out of their way to accommodate me. I’m just having a really terrific experience of people caring about and responding to my health concerns. I don’t know if they have any idea how much it means to me, given the hell I have been through over the years.


Sarah July 27th, 2009

I have learned from hard experience not to trust any hotel bed and the first thing I do on arrival is feel every bedding component looking for down. If I find it, I call housekeeping and have them strip the bed.
Sometimes I’m on top of my game and mention it when I’m booking the room and ask that the bed be down-free when I arrive. This doesn’t always happen, but I’m more likely to get faster service when I say they’ve botched a request from when I made the res. as they’ve no excuse on the timing in that case.

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