The Joys of Innkeeping

After almost 11 years of owning and running Hamanassett, I’m still in love with my chosen profession.  So often I have guests asking about horror stories related to guests.  I’m afraid I almost always disappoint them because we have had so few unpleasant experiences.  There is just something special about the kind of people who choose a bed and breakfast for their getaway rather than a hotel.   I figure running a bed and breakfast if a little like giving birth.  Once you hold that beautiful baby in your arms, you forget about all the pain leading up to it.  It is the same with innkeeping.  While we do experience the good, the bad, and the ugly the good far outweighs the bad and ugly and we tend to forget about them pretty quickly.

So what makes this such a fabulous profession?  Well, the commute is pretty darn easy — a total of 39 steps down the back stairway from our bedroom into the kitchen.  I have to admit I get a certain amount of satisfaction while having my first cup of coffee and watching the news when they show a traffic jam.  My traffic jam is the doberman and English setter getting in front of me on the way down.  And I really do have time to not just stop and smell the roses which Glenn lovingly tends but to listen to the serenade of the birds early in the morning.  I was never a happy early riser but now it is part of my DNA and is made all the better because of being in the country surrounded by the songs of birds.

Absolutely the best part of this business is the people we meet from all around the world.  We’ve had guests from Singapore, Australia, South America, most European countries, Canada and almost every state in the union.  Still waiting for someone from Wyoming.   Almost every business has been represented.  It makes for a lively table when you may have a professor, a doctor, a teacher, maybe a union worker, a carpenter, and a computer specialist.  We’ve had an ex governor of a large Southern state, the son of a major Hollywood legend, the daughter of another Hollywood legend (they were married to each other), a senator from South America,  several professional golfers, an Academy Award nominated costume designer, and a Holly wood director stay with us.   All of these guests were very down to earth and most of the other guests were unaware of who they were sharing breakfast with.

Our most interesting guests usually turn out to be just regular people like me and probably anyone reading this blog.  At the end of breakfast when I’ve finished cooking and helping serve our guests, I usually get the chance to sit with a few guests who are still at the table.  That is when I learn about my guests.  So from time to time I’ll share a story about one of them.  It will always be done anonymously unless they give me permission.  In this case, I’ve received permission to share names and also their own blog with my readers.

What if someone told you that you had to get rid of everything you owned except for what would fit into one suitcase?  I’m talking about household items, sports equipemnt, TVs, yes — clearing out your entire house.  Well, meet Brooke, Chris, Christian and Connor otherwise known as  “The Family Gone Free.”

I haven’t actually had the pleasure of meeting the family yet.  I learned about them when Brooke booked our carriage house to spend the month of September in the Brandywine Valley.  What I learned in our discussion is her family was planning on selling everything they owned from a 4200 square foot house, packing up a mini van and spending the next year traveling around the United States.  How many of us dream about this but never act on it.  They are leaving on July 1 and will return to Folsom, Ca. in July of 2013.  I’ve already been following her blog as she plans the family adventure.   Enjoy their adventure.