We have some favorite stories that we love to share! We’ll tell one or two from time to time – AND we hope you won’t be reading about yourself! We should also note that most of these stories are “on our guests”. We too have made a few mistakes over the years… in one case we had a mouse. HATE to admit that, but we are in the country, and gratefully, we do not see many with the exception of the mice that like to take a midnight swim in the pool (also RARE!!!). We have also forgotten a wake-up call or two, once we made a reservation for the wrong night, and thankfully, only ONE time did we loose a reservation. We have a pretty good record, but we have a ways to go before we reach the “perfect stay”. So… the stories below are “on the guests”. They are typically the fun part of the business.
ROACHES: We had one lady that came to visit the property with her infant daughter and her nanny. She was not our typical guest. She was “high maintenance” (which we don’t really mind), however she actually believed she was easy going. Oy. To be fair, she was very pregnant – I think she was actually a good soul, but maybe not this particular weekend.
At any rate, she called the first morning after check in and let us know that she found a roach in her room. Well, we have lots of wildlife out in the woods, but frankly we NEVER saw a roach. So, we told her we’d do some investigating and do what we could. Typically we like to avoid pesticide, but we certainly would use it if needed.
We could not find a roach. She was very hurt and immediately felt like we accused her of lying. Well, that wasn’t the case… but we were not sure what to do. The next morning she burst into the lobby when about six other guests were enjoying a very lively discussion while having a cup of coffee. She had a zip lock bag… and she was shaking it in my face. “HERE IS YOUR ROACH”. Horrified that this incident was happening so publicly, I spontaneously grabbed the zip-lock out of her hand. I’m not sure what I was thinking… maybe HIDING the evidence??? But I flipped the bag around so I could see it, and what she had captured in the zip-lock bag was a tiny green grass hopper…? Without thinking I said… “This is a grasshopper!”. The guests in the lobby roared with laughter and this poor woman made a quick exit.
She did try to re-book… and it is not that we didn’t like her, but we gave her a nice list of places we were certain that she’d like better! We hope she is doing very well…
DEAD GRANDMOTHER: We have a very strict cancellation policy and at least once a year, it is a problem. The reason for our policy is that we are small. We can’t really afford to hold a room for a guest if they do not promise to keep the reservation. With a more relaxed policy, rates would need to be increased to cover costs associated with the less decisive guests. We think it works well for both the business and the guests.
However on one occasion, it was a particularly difficult situation. A gentleman called and explained that his wife’s mother had died and that they would need to cancel. I recorded the information on the file and attempted to resell the room. I should note, if we resell the room, we release the guest from their obligation… Well, it was a late cancellation and we could not rebook. We ended up charging the gentleman. He called to complain. He said that we were heartless… and I suppose we are a little. It was a peak weekend and we turned many people away because we had held this room for this gentleman. While we do care, the death of his wife’s mother would be very costly to us. We always wonder if people give hundreds of dollars to their friends when relatives die… because that is certainly what people expect us to do… and we are just a business trying to survive. ANYWAY… I digress.
I thought about it for a while and called this man up to offer him a complimentary night during an off-peak travel period… we wanted to do something to make him feel better. We ended up speaking to his wife and immediately expressed condolences for the death of her mother… and to our sincere surprise, she did not know what we were talking about. Her mother was fine and she didn’t know anything about a reservation for a room at our motel… her husband was out of town on business during the week in question.
Well, we quickly ended that call stating that we must have had the wrong number… I’m not sure that marriage lasted much longer than that telephone call. Jeepers. And yes, this is TRUE!
SNAKE: Okay, one more cool story for now. We ARE in the county and hence we have some interesting visitors from time to time. Occasionally we see deer, fox and once a wolf. There was a black bear down the road, and once a neighbors’ ostrich got loose. One such visitor has been more permanent. She (we think, and named Lucy) is a HUGE grass snake… completely harmless, but really big for this kind of snake. We’d see Lucy when we mowed the lawn and would have to get off the mower and chase her off… once I literally picked Lucy up and had to sling her into the bushes.
She also liked to sun herself one the concrete in front of the little studio apartment. One guest called as she needed some toilet paper. When I got to the room, the door was open and Lucy was enjoying the morning sun just in front of the step. I assumed the guest had not seen the snake and in a panic… I thought I should move her quick before the guest got a look at her… so, I reached down and in one sweeping move – slung her off to the side of the building… JUST as the guest came to the door.
It turned out the guest had been watching her and they were afraid to come out… so they saw my secret act to dismiss my snake friend. The guest nearly passed out! But she still visits here to this day and now I have a picture of the snake in lobby so guests will know what to look for. Another guest saw her by the pool and gave an ultimatum… the snake or them… I told her she could start packing. This guest too decided to stay, although when she goes out to the pool… she walks VERY quickly!