The year was 1973, and young Bobby Smithington Jr. was about to graduate from his hometown university. Bobby and his two closest friends Ryan Shrimbley and Thomas Clemens III were planning to go on a road trip together to New York City. They decided to leave on a Thursday night from their hometown in Knoxville, TN and drive to a hotel in the city and spend the weekend in NY, they planned to stay until Monday of the next week.
On Thursday afternoon they were all packed and almost ready to head out from Bobby‚Äôs house. It would be a 12 hour drive and since they were leaving at 4pm they planned to arrive at the Best Eastern hotel they had reservations at around 4am. They left excited and each person took turns driving around 4 hours each. They arrived as planned at 3:34am at the Best Eastern, Bobby went in to the front desk to confirm his reservations and get the room key, etc. The front desk clerk said that he was unable to hold the reservation due to a glitch in their system and that they had given the reservation to another family who were already settled in the room and sound asleep and unfortunately the entire hotel was completely booked up. Bobby was quite upset & tired to say the least. He told them that he better get his money back or else. ‚ÄúOr else what?‚Äù the hotel clerk said. Bobby didn‚Äôt respond.
The 3 guys left the Best Eastern and found a place called The Red Door Inn, it had a pretty cool looking roof actually, it was also red. When they walked in to the hotel to see about getting a room, an extremely old man came to the front desk. He asked what we wanted, Bobby said they were looking for a room with 2 double beds, the old man said they had 1 room left and it would cost $220 for the 3 nights, they took it. They got to their room, which actually had a red door, and walked in with their bags. Not only was the outer door red, but the closet doors and bathroom doors were also red. These people were serious about red doors. The three were extremely tired from the trip so they all went right to sleep.
The next morning they woke up around 10am and decided to get ready and head out for a day on the town. When they got out to the parking lot they noticed that someone had painted their car doors red. ‚ÄúWhat the!!!‚Äù Thomas yelled. They had travelled in Thomas‚Äô new car. They filed a report with the authorities and then decided to leave in the red-doored car. They decided to go eat at a hip sports bar & catch some of the afternoon Yankees game, oddly enough the door at the entrance of the sports bar was red. They ate, watched 5 innings of the game and then decided to drive to Manhattan to spend the afternoon & evening there. They walked out the back entrance door which was red and were on their way.
They got into their car but Thomas was unable to start the engine, his key would not work. They then realized that they were not in the same vehicle. It was the strangest thing, they were in the same parking spot and were sitting inside a car with red doors but it was not the same car. They went to the authorities again and they came to the conclusion that someone had stolen Thomas‚Äô car and replaced it in the parking lot with a different vehicle, also with red doors. They all were stunned in disbelief at what had occurred so far on the trip. Several hours later they asked the police sheriff if he could drive them back to The Red Door Inn, he said ‚ÄúI‚Äôd be happy to do that for you boys.‚Äù They got into the police car that had red doors on it and were on the way back to the hotel. After several minutes they realized they were heading in a different direction. Ryan asked the policeman why he was going a different way and he just smiled and kept driving. The 3 were getting more nervous by the minute.
As they drove the car kept gaining speed, they were on the freeway and going quite fast. There were traffic signs that said ‚ÄúDrive Slow, Traffic Ahead!‚Äù The car kept gaining more & more speed. They finally saw brake lights in the distance and a traffic jam approaching, the police car did not slow down, they were now driving about 90 mph. Thomas yelled out ‚ÄúAre you crazy! Slow down!‚Äù The cop was no longer smiling, but sweating. They were approaching the stopped traffic, it looked like they were going to crash and collide when…Bobby jumped up out of bed in a pool of sweat. It was noon and Thomas and Ryan were waiting outside his bedroom in Knoxville, TN. Bobby was so relieved. It was just a bad dream. Thomas asked Bobby, ‚ÄúDude, why aren‚Äôt you out of bed already? We need to get on the road asap if we want to get to NYC sometime this weekend!‚Äù Bobby said, ‚Äúok man, I‚Äôve got my reservations to the Best Western and we should be good to go.‚Äù Just then Ryan said, I could‚Äôve gotten us a free room at The Red Roof Inn because my cousin works at one. Bobby exclaimed, ‚ÄúNo no! We‚Äôre good, let‚Äôs just stay at the Best Western.‚Äù ‚ÄúOk‚Äù said Ryan.
As the three friends walked out of the house towards Thomas‚Äô new car they planned to ride in, Bobby couldn‚Äôt believe what he saw, the door was red.