I don't know if it's that I've been away and need to get my head back into "business" mode, or whether I just flat out panicked...
My new guests arrived last night and, although we've had beautiful summer-like sunshine filled weather for Autumn so far, it has turned very cold almost overnight this week. We were worried so my wife went down and asked whether our guests needed any extra blankets for their comfort. They are a load of retirees about my parents age, so figured they might feel the cold. When my wife knocked on the door, she found they had the electric fireplace roaring and were quite comfortable. They said no to extra blankets and said they were "tough folk" and it took far more than a little chill in the air to bother them. Wife stayed down there for 20 minutes chatting to them, apparently lovely couple and had great stories to share.
So righto, we thought we were good. Until this morning...
It seems that only 2 out of 4 guests were present during the "offer of blankets" last night. The other 2 guests appeared this morning and complained of being bitterly cold last night! They were just about to leave to go out, so they asked us (pointedly) to drop some extra blankets off later when they returned. Sounds fine when I write this, like a normal conversation even. But it was the emphasise placed on the "we were very cold" that shook me. She said it twice and gave a stare with a grave, seriousness to it.
If my over 60's mother said she was cold, in that tone... I'd be a dead man.
I was mortified. I ran to our stores of blankets... then as I was riffling through and deciding this one, or that one, wasn't good enough... I thought "hey, lets get the best blankets money can buy!" Total overreaction, I know, but I've never had a guest tell me point blank that they were unhappy before.. so I got in the car and headed across town to the best bedding store. $250 of blankets later... (...including 2 super thick blankets, and 2 electric blankets with fleece covering and his/hers heat control zones...) I now feel prepared to respond with an arm load of fleecy ammunition.
My emotional self says "great decision, entirely the right thing, they'll be super pleased and I'll feel much better about having made that lady cold."
My business self is saying "what a complete Womble"...
PS: I hope you like the meme picture. I made it myself. At least I can do one thing right today...
Hey @Ben551, funny... consider it an investment in the future, and if you're overstocked with blankets now you could donate the oldies to a shelter/charity and take it off your taxes!
Great picture. Haven't we all had days like that?
Hey that's a great idea @Kimberly54 they are always wanting bedding at our local woman's refuge. We donated two beds last year and a load of curtains, which they said they needed, but I think we could do with tossing out a few blankets. Hey thanks for the idea.
.... @Branka & Silvia1 ... I know, I know... they were super pleased with the over response though lol. I even went down and offered to fit the electric blanket on the bed for her, which she accepted. We had a right laugh about it, so it was all good :)
@Ben551 Yes, you panicked, but a mother's stare can do that to just about anyone!. Now you are truly prepared for the winter. I love the electric blankets that have seperate heating controls as hubby and I have different ideas about what warm is. Definitely blame the lack of blankets on the friends!
Love the meme!! Is that one of your cats?
@Beth80 exactly right! It was the mothers 'stare' that got me. So much like my own Mother's... I shat myself. No, that's actually not one of our cats. But, we have agreed that we can get a 4th cat (me wants) and if/when, it will be a ginger one. That will complete the set. Black one, tabby one, fat one, ginger one.
@Ben551 . If I recall correctly, this will be your first winter of hosting. And now you have one more weapon in your arsenal of host tools. I am going to be the "wet blanket" though. I hope that your expensive blankets are washable, and fit in your dryer, and don't take too long to dry.
Because you have just added to the list of items that must be washed between guests.
I keep the blankets in a closet, folded in quarters, then thirds and then bundled with some ribbon. No sane person would EVER fold and tie a blanket this way. And that is the point. I can, in an instant, tell if someone has used a blanket, and off to the washer it goes.
On a positive note, the blankets are a one time investment. That electric fireplace [do you have solar] will be the actual expense.
@Susan151that's very good advice and you're right, it will be our first winter of hosting. We're just heading toward the cold weather now, and we're new to this house, so it's all a bit of discovery to see how hospitable it is...
Yeah we got the type of blankets with a detachable control unit and washable (wife insisted on it - as usual she 'knows things' about this stuff).
That's a lovely idea with the ribbon tying thing, I might do that. What we have been doing with spare pillows and blankets is putting them into a vacuum sealed bag. I don't provide a vacuum, so there is no way they can re-vacuum it and I can tell if the bag has been inflated, i.e. blankets or pillows used. Your idea sounds prettier though. I was slightly worried that insects might crawl in and 'live' in our blankets (separate issue we have) hence the vacuum bagging.
We have solar panels and a Tesla powerwall, so we're pretty good for electricity. I don't think it would be very economical otherwise, I agree!
@Ben551 Ah, you bought electric blankets? At least that is what it sounds like with a "detachable control unit."
I don't have a bug problem here in New England. If we did, I think the vacuum sealed bags would be extra insurance against infestation for sure. The ribbons and folding are mighty fussy. I admit to a bit of a groan when I see that someone has actually used a blanket! Funny response, since of course, I am pleased that I have provided something that makes them comfortable.
@Ben551 I think you reacted as a Superhost. And I love the meme. I could have used that every day of this past week.
@Susan151 You make an excellent point!!! I just got some bathrobes, but one of the places has a tiny dryer that takes forever. So I think the guests there will just have to do without!
I just got some bathrobes, but one of the places has a tiny dryer that takes forever. So I think the guests there will just have to do without!
I would love to offer robes, but I just can't do any more laundry! And, I would have to have at least 6, enough for two full groups, so where will I store the 3 that are not being used by guests during this visit? At some point, given that the income from AirBNB is sliding, I have to draw a line. [And then in moments of weakness, I draw a new line.]
@Susan151, @Ann72 , I have robes which I put out for some guests but not all. And they are folded and tied so I will know if used./ So, who gets a robe? Anyone sleeping in the garden room, as they have to walk a few metres outside to go to the bathroom. In the house, anyone staying two nights or more. One night=no robes. But I have found that most people don't use them, so the laundry isn't too onerous. It is a nice extra though.