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I was already aware that New York and Toronto are under seige by bed bugs, but I only just discovered that Montreal is also beset by the dreaded punaises.

My understanding is that bed bugs are not snobs and do not discriminate between four-star and no-star hotels: going upscale and paying more money doesn’t guarantee you’ll avoid getting eaten alive.

I am researching and reading travel reviews much more thoroughly than normal. I really don’t want to check my parents into La Casa del Scratch.

When you’re booking your own accommodations, how do you figure out whether a hotel has bed bugs?

If anyone has good advice on how to verify in advance that a (Montreal) hotel is bug-free, I would love your help!

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11 comments

1 Sean Paul Kelley { 05.21.09 at 12:42 pm }

In all of my travels I have only ever encountered bed-bugs three times. Twice in India–but of course–and once in Malaysia.

Now, I’ve been mugged and mauled by mosquitos in many places, but bed-bugs? Rare.

2 Shaula { 05.21.09 at 1:20 pm }

You’re lucky! There’s a real infestation of bed bugs up in the North East of North America.

A friend of mine in Toronto was driven from his apartment by them (when his landlord wasn’t willing to do anything about it). Poor soul!

3 Sean Paul Kelley { 05.21.09 at 4:35 pm }

Well, bed bugs are nasty. Each encounter with them was very unpleasant. No doubt about that!

4 Ian Welsh { 05.23.09 at 6:07 am }

Oddly, never encountered them. Hope to keep that record.

5 scott { 05.25.09 at 3:18 pm }

http://www.bedbugregistry.com is a good site. I always use it when I stay somewhere. You do NOT want bed bugs.

Great blog, btw. I’ve added you to my blogroll!

6 Shaula { 05.25.09 at 4:14 pm }

WOW, Scott. That is absolutely perfect.

Thank you very, very much!

7 Kathy Maister { 05.26.09 at 3:13 pm }

We stayed at the Hyatt (Goat Island) in Newport, RI and were severely attacked by BED BUGS! This was our very first experience with bed bugs in 25 years of travel around the world.

It took weeks to recover!

8 Dan Hull { 05.26.09 at 10:55 pm }

Better. But keep writing. Keep writing. Keep writing.

9 Cortnehy { 05.31.09 at 3:32 am }

Hi, Shaula. How the hell are you (minus bed bugs of course)? Couldn’t get your bio to load on zoetrope, but was hoping you’re doing well.

10 Shaula { 05.31.09 at 5:04 am }

Kathy, you two have really seen the zeniths and nadirs of travel in all your adventures, haven’t you? (And it is lovely to see you here in the commnents!)

Dan–if you only you could read all the brilliant things I’ve written in my head. ;) I’ll get them on the screen when I can.

I surprised myself with a productive spurt of creative writing this spring, that’s resulted in pieces being accepted in two upcoming anthologies.

Cortney, I didn’t mean to disappear on all y’all. (Neil has been working on teaching me to conjugate the formal y’all for some time now.) We are battling the weather in a serious way. The weather report said tonight, and I quote, “Monsoon season is coming early to Albuquerque this year.” I believe this has been one of the stormiest Mays on record. The barometric pressure swings are wreaking havoc with me, and my sleep, so we’re rethinking our plans right now and may leave New Mexico early and travel to our next destination by an alternate route. It looks like it’s either that or fix the Mini with pontoons!

I’m getting back into the swing of traveling, heavy mileage, hotel living, trying to do some writing here…the creative writing side has suffered, and I just haven’t had the social energy for Zoetrope, or more precisely the lucidity.

But I miss all y’all, and I’ll be back. Possibly not until after we return from a family wedding in late June.

Please send my best to everyone and assure them that I am alive, if a little insomniac, and too busy living to be a writer.

11 Cortney { 05.31.09 at 12:47 pm }

Sounds great, Shaula! Hope the travels pick up soon.

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