I have some guests staying at my primary listing this weekend: they have never been to Canada before, and in fact, have never left their home country before. They asked many questions ahead of their trip, and one of the things they asked me was "What's the LCBO?"
Here in Ontario, alcohol can only be sold through a few channels, and the primary channel is the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO, or LC pronounced Elsie, if you're feeling informal), who operate stores where you can buy said comestibles. It turned out the guest was asking because they wanted to buy some Puppers beer from the show Letterkenny (a cultishly popular Canadian sitcom). I looked into it, and found that only a few stores in our province have it, but one of them happens to be close to our cottage. I called the store, got them to set aside the last 8 cans they had, and I went to pick it up this morning while out and about doing my real job. The guest is delighted, and I thought it was kind of a fun thing to help them with, and I'm happy they're happy.
So what is the funniest, or most fun request you've had from a guest and have helped them with?
@RowenaAmazing... I've never looked at your listing before, and what a stunning setting. My guests might see a rabbit or a raccoon in our neighbourhood, and that's about as exotic as it gets.
The Easter egg hunt is so sweet! Same with the picture. Love it. Small acts of kindness are still memorable.
@Alexandra316 If I do say so myself our listing IS a stunning setting. We intended to buy a low maintenance, low set brick house and ended up with the absolute opposite because we were so captivated by the views. ( we try to remind ourselves of this as we view our dwindling bank balance and the HUGE amount of work - especially landscaping - that still needs doing. So far we've manually wheelbarrowed 53 cubic metres of roadbase in the back yard and are not even halfway there yet). But, no matter how stressed and rushed I am, without fail, when I turn the corner to get there after a 1.5 hour drive, I feel myself going all serene and calm- even if I do have 5 hours cleaning ahead of me!
But animals are a matter of perspective and experience. We're routinely woken by the kookaburras "laughing" each morning and most work days it doesn't penetrate my consciousness. BUT I've never seen a racoon in my life and would l be over the moon if/when I did. I was beside myself when I saw my first puffin. I remember going to Greenwich Park in London and being enthralled with squirrels that came right up to me - had never seen a squirrel either! And then I found an acorn - just like the one in the picture in My LIttle Golden book counting book when I was 3. I was ecstatic. The locals thought I was a lunatic.
Rabbits are regarded as feral in Queensland, are illegal as pets and any wild rabbits are routinely exterminated, so a wild rabbit would also be a novelty to many Australians ( we live on acreage and next door has a warren of wild rabbits which we keep stum about).
Brisbane CBD and surrounds are inundated with ibis who drive the locals crazy. They create such mess trawling through bins, stealing food right out of your hands etc etc. ( a bit like urban racoons) But the majority of tourists comment on what lovely birds they are and take heaps of photos - we all think they're mad... - you get my drift.
Whales breaching in the ocean however is pretty special, i think to just about everyone.
Can't tell you how long Canada has been on our wish list. Maybe one day....
@Rowena That makes sense! Objectively, squirrels and raccoons are pretty darned cute, as are skunks and rabbits. As they say, familiarity breeds contempt, or at least indifference. I took a pic of this guy enjoying some popcorn a few weeks ago at my cottage: what's not to love there?
I would love to see a koala or drop bear in the wild. I didn't realize that ibis were such a problem: I've seen them in Florida, but I didn't know they were scavengers. They are quite pretty.
You should definitely come to Canada. It's an amazingly diverse place, and when I take the time to objectively look at the area I live in (not the familiarity blindness I suffer from most of the time), it's gorgeous: who wouldn't want to live in wine country, beside a lake?
I would love to get to your area of the world at some point too... hopefully some day!
@Alexandraif you REALLY want to see a koala in the wild you'd better get over quick smart. They are in terrible decline - almost reaching crisis point in many areas. We had 3 or 4 on my Brisbane property when we moved here 18 years ago- but none for years and years. urban development and disease adn dogs are really taking a toll. You're not even allowed to hold one now at most sanctuaries ( unless you're Meghan Markle)
I have no idea how to attach a pic on this system - looks awfully complicated but that squirrel looks gorgeous - they seem to have such personality.
I have no doubt I'd adore Canada - not a lack on enthusiasm - just a lack of the readies.
My next door neighbours from Coolum are over there for 3 months so I'll have to enjoy vicariously through them when they return...
@Rowena I didn't realize things had gotten so bad for koalas: that's really sad.
I actually have some Australians staying with me starting next week for an extended visit. They're attending a family wedding then staying in the area. Hopefully they'll be impressed by my bunnies!
I'm not going to jinx myself and say they're great guests - as they've not checked out yet, but lets just say out of all the guests i"ve hosted so far ( not that many really) these are the ones I"ve felt the most comfortable and relaxed about, both before and after meeting them. They were just so PLEASED to have arrived, seemed genuinely surprised and chuffed by my welcome basket, (which I put a lot of thought into for each separate guest - because they're international they got tim tams and macadamias, as well as some home made jams) This is only their second airbnb, and they seem so open minded, and determined to make the most of every minute of their holiday. I haven't heard from them since their first day which was just to tell me how well they'd slept and how much they loved the house, so I assume all is well.
I was really only joking about the 10 minute bit - but if I'd choreographed the whole incident it couldnt' have gone more splendidly - it really was like one of those tourism promos - action! action! action!
all these stories are making me feel like I don’t do enough.
We did have this one guest who pointed out that he was an avid traveller of the world who was doing his MBA. Maybe true but given little hints he gave off and the fact that he did not expect London to be as big as it was etc we kind of suspected he was emphasising his truth....
Part of his MBA thesis was based on a feedback report from Local London businesses (primarily startups/SMEs). As he wanted to save money he took the longest route from just outside Amsterdam (his home) and arrived in London after 24 hours of travelling- how he achieved this I have no idea.
As his plan was to stay 2 nights he would use the first evening and the whole next day to disperse his questionnaire and collect responses... he arrived and feel asleep, waking up past midday the next day.
I felt sorry for him so I started distributing these questionnaires with him (I knew the best places as my job entailed working with companies such as these) we must have spent about 5 hours doing this, talking to people, getting feedback. He wrote me later to say that he had more than enough responses as to complete his MBA thesis and that he was grateful. Nothing fantastic on my part but I suppose it was big.
Have a beautiful day!
Hammocks in the trees and chicken slaughtering...how's that for an experience?
We had a group of people come to stay for a soccer cup. A few weeks before the cup starts they email and ask if I have more rooms or beds available as one more child (grown) and fiancee also decided to join them.
We don't - the soccer cup is so big and the area of Denmark so small that literally everything is booked 6 months in advance. But I say that they are welcome to come stay in a tent. They don't bring a tent, but they bring covered hammocks and all the kids end up camping in our garden for the whole week. We have a big area with large trees, chickens walking around freely, it all ends up being pretty idyllic.
We end up socializing quite a bit with the group as they end up not going to the soccer cup, instead we all stay out late every night drinking wine and barbecuing. We have some chickens that we had planned to slaughter (sorry if this offends you, but we live on a farm, the chickens have the best of lives living freely in our garden until we slaughter them as humanely as we can) and ask if they want to help. And they do - so we get help, they get a new experience and we all make new friends :)
@Solveig That sounds amazing, idyllic in fact. Amazing when things come together like that when we open up our homes - and ourselves - to strangers. Not offended at all: chicken doesn't come from a plastic tray at the supermarket.