Carolyn Parkhurst imagines what happened to Eloise, the six-year-old girl who lives at the Plaza Hotel in a series of children’s books written in the 1950s by Kay Thompson.

I am Eloise

I am forty-six

I am a city girl

I live at the Crowne Plaza

There is a lobby with purple lights and silver-and-gold confetti things hanging from the ceiling

You can find videos of the elevators on YouTube

The absolute first thing I do in the morning is make coffee in the bathroom and check to see what’s on pay-per-view

Then I have to go to the health club to see if they’ve gotten any new kettlebells and then stop at the business center to Google a few foreign swear words

Cheryl is the daytime concierge

She knows people who have appeared on at least three of the “Real Housewives” series

She is very good at recommending bus tours and pointing out where the coffee-to-go island is

Every morning, I go out to Times Square and see what kinds of discounts they’re offering on show tickets, and whether there are any new colors of M&M’s

And then I follow Elmo around for a while, to see if I can catch him smoking or saying any bad words

Sometimes I talk to Mark-on-the-sidewalk, who sells fraudulent merchandise to tourists

I ask, “How’s business, Mark?”

and he says, “Hey, you want some comedy-club tickets? I can get you into Caroline’s, cheap,”

and I say, “Not today, thank you very much”

Ooh, I love love love Times Square!

I have a dog who looks like a supermodel

His name is McConaughey

My personal assistant is named Manny

He lives in a connecting room

Sometimes I call him my valet, my steward, or my manservant, or every once in a long while my houseboy

Manny says that he “cannot stand” when I call him my houseboy, and he looks so sad and offended that I then have to give him the evening off and bring him a glass of whiskey in his quarters and rub his shoulders tenderly and make a pass at him, just so he has the opportunity to turn me down

Sometimes, when McConaughey and I are bored, I sprinkle glitter on his fur, and we pretend we are at a disco in the seventies

We put on our sunglasses and dance until we need to catch our breath, and then we fall back on the sofa, absolutely exhausted

Then we gossip about whether Mick Jagger seems a little depressed lately and debate whether we should take another trip to the ladies’ room to see if there’s any more coke

And then eventually McConaughey licks himself and ends up with glitter on his tongue, and I have to call Manny to arrange to take him for a groom, and Manny lectures me for absolutely hours about how mortifying it is to pick up glittery poop with a plastic bag

I am dating-with-possible-quotation-marks Rodrigo from room service

He has a girlfriend in Ecuador whom he wants to bring over when he has enough money, and I am fine fine fine with that

Here is where he has been: Guayaquil

Here is where I have been: divorce court

A bottle of Patron Silver costs two hundred dollers from room service

Open bottles are nonrefundable

Then, if I don’t have dinner plans, I go down to the bar and order a Pink Martini and a Coconut Pyramid

I have tried all of the “Vintage Cocktails” and most of the “Specialty Cocktails”

I stay away from the Kentucky Punch because I do not believe that bourbon should be mixed with Sprite

Those bar stools can get slippery if one is not careful

Sometimes I get a call from my friend Marita, who spent a semester in culinary school and once received a callback to be a contestant on “The Bachelor”

I tell her about the new Versace pet bowl I got for McConaughey, and she tells me about her new boyfriend, who likes her to dress up as a character from “My Little Pony”

Then we laugh and she asks, “Can you get me any Xanax?” and I have to quiet down, in case Manny is listening

Manny says that he wishes I wouldn’t use the iron in the room to make grilled cheese sandwiches

But he always eats one anyway

Sometimes, after midnight, Manny and I go on a late-night hallway walk to peek under the lids of the leftover room-service trays

Manny says that it’s a scandal how many people waste butter

Here is what I can do:


Eat four-hundred-dollar sushi

Win an eBay auction at the absolute last minute

Oh my Lord but my life is busy and fulfilling

Some mornings, I wake up with a rawther awful hangover, and Manny has to fill the ice bucket and bring cold compresses for my head and stand outside the bathroom, making worried noises while I puke

Then Manny reads me my OKCupid responses, and, just before eleven, he says that if I feel well enough we can turn on “The Price is Right,” and maybe order something light from room service, like seasonal mixed berries or seven-grain toast

But usually we’re so enthralled by the show that we forget to call until after eleven-thirty, and by then they’re only serving lunch, and we have to get wings and sliders instead

If it’s a Plinko day, we might just have to get a bottle of Prosecco, too

Ooh I miss miss miss Bob Barker

I have a collection of umbrellas that people have left in the bar and the lobby

Sometimes, when it rains, I put them all in a bucket and take them outside and sell them for ten dollars each

One time, I sold one to a man who used to be in REO Speedwagon

Ooh I love love love my life!


Illustration by Jordan Awan.