The first time I met Casper was in the Jansen elevator. We had left at the same time that morning and arrived back home late at night. I remembered her because of her cool style – she wore an oversized sweater, a pair of jeans, sneakers and had this knowing, wise look on her face. Every cell of her body screamed coolness. Desperately wanting to make friends, since I had just arrived in Jansen, I said to her woof, what a long day, wasn’t it?” and the rest is history. It was the beginning of our friendship, that is lasting until today.
Casper came to Hotel Jansen from China by the age of 17, in January 2020. A month later we had met. Another month in she visited my room for the first time.
Opening the door, I told her “Sorry for the mess, I was not expecting to have someone over” (like a proper German). But Casper was not even paying attention to what I just said. She stood in the middle of my room, next to the small kitchenette, her mouth wide open. I addressed her again, asking something without getting a reply. After awaking out of her numbness, she looked me into my eyes and nearly screamed „why do you have two windows?!” With the expression of a child on her face whose balloon had just popped. I was genuinely confused since I had assumed that the hotel consisted of units identical in construction and that every room, apart from the unique pieces of art, was the same. Telling her about it, she insisted that she only had one window.
I remember thinking that the poor girl maybe got the janitors closet and was just unlucky. All clear: every room has two large windows. Your room will have, too. Another week after the „Window awakening” I got a video from Casper on WhatsApp. The video was just black in the beginning, I couldn’t really figure what this was about. Some seconds later the secret revealed itself: it was one of the blackout curtains that Hotel Jansen has. The video continued with her pushing the curtain aside, revealing a window. A second window. A window with an awesome view above the canals and the city of Amsterdam since she lived on 5th floor.
The camera turned around, showing her face, now happier than I had ever seen it before. I have two windows!! She exclaimed… one Casper lived 2,5 months in her room with one curtain closed, not curious enough to figure out what was behind it. Maybe she thought it was decoration.
Moral of the story: make friends, chat to the people who are around, they’ve all been new at some point – and who knows, maybe you’ll find some secrets in your room. (hint: we have our own bathroom! Good luck finding them ©).