2017-01-25 / Here's the Scoop

Here's The Scoop

The imperfect guest

The idea of being a houseguest seems like a fairly simple deed. You go, toss your suitcase in the spare bedroom and settle in for some small talk. Easier said than done, in my book.

I’m a creature of habit and my habits are pretty hard to break. I have certain routines and moving out of my comfort zone is, well, uncomfortable. On the surface, being a guest would seem like the perfect way to travel. Especially for someone who hates the stale air and high prices usually associated with hotel rooms.

However, even when I’m saving money and have access to windows that open, I still have trouble settling in during visits to someone else’s home. First of all, there’s the fact that, even if I’ve been to someone’s house numerous times, I can never remember where things go.

While staying with a relative over the weekend, I found myself constantly asking our host, “Where do I find the blank?” After awhile, she began questioning the status of my long-term memory. She wasn’t the first person to challenge me in this area. I think.

Where is that, again?

Anyhow, in my defense, sometimes I can’t locate items in others’ homes because they aren’t available. I was very pleased to see that my sister-in-law had a supply of coffee on hand prior to our visit. Just not enough. I’ve found that when someone lives alone, they don’t always fully understand the needs of others. In this case, she greatly underestimated my morning caffeine consumption. The coffee our host had purchased was a good brand. Until it was gone. On the final day of our visit, I awoke to find a “green bag” of Eight-O-Clock coffee on the counter. I scoured the cupboards and the freezer, but this was the only option. Being the last one up, I poured a cup and joined my wife and sister in-law for morning conversation.

My wife could immediately sense there was something wrong. As soon as I had a moment alone with her, I whispered in a panicked voice, “It’s decaf!”

In a supreme act of kindness, my wife said she would be happy to head out to the store and grab some of the real deal coffee. She was quite aware that sending me out in public in an un-caffeinated condition was a poor idea.

Heightened alertness

She soon returned from this Good Samaritan mission and we enjoyed several cups of freshly brewed java. I was becoming alert, ready for the challenges of a new day. My sister in-law apologized for not remembering my caffeine dependence. I assured her it was fine. As long as it didn’t happen again. Ha, ha.

As the day drew into sharper focus and we chatted idly, our host asked how we slept. I said that last night was pretty good. The night before, ironically, was another story. “Too much caffeine during the long drive here.” We had a good laugh over that turn of events.

Everyone was in a good mood. It just didn’t seem like an appropriate time to address the pillow situation. The fact that I had slept well the night before was a minor miracle given the pillow options in the guest room. One pillow was similar to a bag of concrete that had sat around too long in the building supply store. The other was like a sack of wet mush — not too different from quick sand.

As if reading my mind, my sister-in-law commented, “I really need to get new pillows in that room.” Having slept on these same pillows during visits for the past 25 years, I knew this was just pillow talk. — Brian Sweeney

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Lol. Glad your family loves

Lol. Glad your family loves you because you are a big pain in the ass.
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