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Do we look for the positive or the negative?

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Samster

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I know that innkeepers get tired and worn out by the end of a busy time with non-stop guests, but do you feel like we look more for the negative than the positive from our guests? Do you think that this just happens more when we're so exhausted we can't stand it?
I know this is a great place to vent, but it sometimes seems like there's a real trend of posting about the problem guests more than the guests that are really nice or even awesome. Seemed like I would get like that when I was going non-stop here.
I guess it doesn't hurt to remember that our guests are the source of our income and pay to stay with us. We might have a limited time to make our best impression on them, as well as the other way around.
I ran into some former guests at a gathering about a week ago who ended up accepting jobs & moving here (a couple of professors at our university) and I was surprised at what they remembered about us and our place. They were a couple of gentleman in a long line of job applicants and I remembered their faces but not their names. :-(
Just some thoughts......
 

JBloggs

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Yes, agreed. We do make an impression, one way or the other. The vibes we put out can make or break a guest visit, it effects the overall atmosphere. Yes, we have the power!
Let's just recall a visit anyone of us has had where the innkeeper(s) made you feel unwelcome. You felt like you were a number and it was just a business.
I mentioned the guests from upstate NY who checked out today who told me of a variety of B&B's they have visited over the years, and what caught me as strange as they mentioned all of the innkeepers by name.
I have not had a guest do this before. most cannot recall the inn names let alone the innkeepers. Good or bad, they remembered each of them. They were a lovely couple. They told me about a horrible inn experience and he said he wanted to review them on TA and let others know what they were in for, and the wife said No, as she felt sorry for that couple.
Why did they tell me? Well I mentioned in conversation how you can go to a B&B and encounter the cantankerous innkeeper and it really puts a damper on your stay. I saw them roll their eyes in agreement and then say "You got that right!" and then told me that story.
Overall, out of all the stories they told, I heard of great innkeepers and wonderful inns. Sometimes they explained it was not the building itself, but what the innkeepers had made it into. I liked hearing that!
I will be philosophical for a moment...bear with me as I try to put it into words:
Knowing what a great man has done versus knowing a great man makes all the difference in my life.
I say this as great men can build monumental things and have major accomplishments and change the world...but knowing someone who is great and having them impact my own life personally is what makes life worth living.
So for that, I commend the great innkeepers who personally impact lives each and every day in this business. Don't ever give up!
 

Morticia

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Take a look at the threads about 'great guests' or 'wonderful guests' or even the latest one where Tipsy's guests all want her brilliant breakfast instead of restaurant food and what do you see when compared with posts on PITAS?
Nothing, that's what you see. No one comments, or comments so little those threads fall right to the bottom of the page.
Bad guests are 'news'. Same reason you only see a 'happy' news item at the end of a news broadcast...it's swell but it's what we EXPECT. We expect guests to be wonderful, happy, clean, neat and tidy and not trash our rooms or do really stupid stuff (like take the cover off the k-cup and then put it in the machine so the coffee grounds go everywhere). We expect them to love our homes and what we feed them and to not stand around whinging about every little thing.
So when they SURPRISE us and whinge on or break stuff and hide it or send back the breakfast untouched (and unexplained) or show up 6 hours ahead or behind schedule we write about it because we want sympathy from those who know it as well as we do.
Of course it sounds like a whinge-fest of our own, but we're among family here, so we let our hair down and whinge on. When I get together with friends do they want to know about all the lovely guests? Of course not! They want to know about the hair-raising ones.
But I always expect a wonderful experience with my guests. Always. Sometimes very fast one-nighters in the summer, but others who I'm tickled pink they picked us because they are just so sweet.
The pills are just more fun to talk about...like bad dates.
And seriously? If more people just sympathized with the innkeeper with the issue instead of saying, 'Well, here's how you fix it,' (which we know ONLY works in that ONE situation), there'd be fewer whinges because we'd feel listened to instead of preached at. (And I'm guilty as charged, hate to say.
)
So, yeah, we whinge. But who else would we whinge to? Spouses don't want to hear it. Every day friends don't want to hear it. (But, they do love to hear the stories once/year!) We can't tell the guests.
 

Sunshine

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wow... and I was just going to go on here to vent.......
 

Joey Camb

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If it helps any I have some guests who are making me crackers (as daft as brushes) but I have just had a father and daughter team in who were great. I was helping them and some other guests get parked and they said, "gosh you really have this B&B stuff down!" (as in really good at it) They compliamented me on always seeming in control however busy it was and seeming calm and collected. They were really nice. Also I have two electrician in for a month and they had to go elsewhere last night as we were booked up and when they came back today the first thing one said was if you get any cancellation let me know straight away we don't want to go anywhere else. (they are like faries they go to work at 7am don't have breakfast and eat their dinner in their room I never see them) now I know it is partly as I am close to their work but it gladens my heart. Also I had a chap book a year in advance today for the show currently in town as he was determined to get in with me. It is these people who make my day. I don't like people who kiss my arse to get in here when they don't even know me but when they say we want to make sure we stay with you and we know you are popular so we decided to book early and make sure of our place. It makes all the difference. I know its partly because of my amazing location (it is why we bought here), the fact we have a car park and that we do a competative price but I like to think it is partly because we look after our people.
 

Morticia

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After reading Camb's reply I have to say that if I had expressions like 'daft as brushes' at my command I wouldn't need to complain at all.
Wait, let me try...
"Oh, they're making me daft as brushes!"
Yup, I feel better already!
 

Morticia

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Yes, agreed. We do make an impression, one way or the other. The vibes we put out can make or break a guest visit, it effects the overall atmosphere. Yes, we have the power!
Let's just recall a visit anyone of us has had where the innkeeper(s) made you feel unwelcome. You felt like you were a number and it was just a business.
I mentioned the guests from upstate NY who checked out today who told me of a variety of B&B's they have visited over the years, and what caught me as strange as they mentioned all of the innkeepers by name.
I have not had a guest do this before. most cannot recall the inn names let alone the innkeepers. Good or bad, they remembered each of them. They were a lovely couple. They told me about a horrible inn experience and he said he wanted to review them on TA and let others know what they were in for, and the wife said No, as she felt sorry for that couple.
Why did they tell me? Well I mentioned in conversation how you can go to a B&B and encounter the cantankerous innkeeper and it really puts a damper on your stay. I saw them roll their eyes in agreement and then say "You got that right!" and then told me that story.
Overall, out of all the stories they told, I heard of great innkeepers and wonderful inns. Sometimes they explained it was not the building itself, but what the innkeepers had made it into. I liked hearing that!
I will be philosophical for a moment...bear with me as I try to put it into words:
Knowing what a great man has done versus knowing a great man makes all the difference in my life.
I say this as great men can build monumental things and have major accomplishments and change the world...but knowing someone who is great and having them impact my own life personally is what makes life worth living.
So for that, I commend the great innkeepers who personally impact lives each and every day in this business. Don't ever give up!.
Joey Bloggs said:
I say this as great men can build monumental things and have major accomplishments and change the world...but knowing someone who is great and having them impact my own life personally is what makes life worth living.
So for that, I commend the great innkeepers who personally impact lives each and every day in this business. Don't ever give up!
I would BET that Gomez alone has made it easier for scores of women to get their husbands into the NEXT B&B they want to book. It's like a 'boy's club' in my kitchen some mornings. I feel like I'm intruding in my own house!
 

Samster

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Yes, agreed. We do make an impression, one way or the other. The vibes we put out can make or break a guest visit, it effects the overall atmosphere. Yes, we have the power!
Let's just recall a visit anyone of us has had where the innkeeper(s) made you feel unwelcome. You felt like you were a number and it was just a business.
I mentioned the guests from upstate NY who checked out today who told me of a variety of B&B's they have visited over the years, and what caught me as strange as they mentioned all of the innkeepers by name.
I have not had a guest do this before. most cannot recall the inn names let alone the innkeepers. Good or bad, they remembered each of them. They were a lovely couple. They told me about a horrible inn experience and he said he wanted to review them on TA and let others know what they were in for, and the wife said No, as she felt sorry for that couple.
Why did they tell me? Well I mentioned in conversation how you can go to a B&B and encounter the cantankerous innkeeper and it really puts a damper on your stay. I saw them roll their eyes in agreement and then say "You got that right!" and then told me that story.
Overall, out of all the stories they told, I heard of great innkeepers and wonderful inns. Sometimes they explained it was not the building itself, but what the innkeepers had made it into. I liked hearing that!
I will be philosophical for a moment...bear with me as I try to put it into words:
Knowing what a great man has done versus knowing a great man makes all the difference in my life.
I say this as great men can build monumental things and have major accomplishments and change the world...but knowing someone who is great and having them impact my own life personally is what makes life worth living.
So for that, I commend the great innkeepers who personally impact lives each and every day in this business. Don't ever give up!.
There's nothing wrong with whinging or whining either for that matter, whether it's for sympathy or to get something constructive out of it. Seems like we also have to be aware though that guests are human too and they can have arrived at your B&B with as many, if not more issues than you are dealing with and they are paying to stay with you and have a certain experience. We are in the service industry.
Not preaching here but I'll never forget some of our guests who made me very grateful for everything that I have in my life. Their life issues or situations made my life look like a bed of roses.
I guess I'd rather remember the good, not the bad.
 

Samster

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If it helps any I have some guests who are making me crackers (as daft as brushes) but I have just had a father and daughter team in who were great. I was helping them and some other guests get parked and they said, "gosh you really have this B&B stuff down!" (as in really good at it) They compliamented me on always seeming in control however busy it was and seeming calm and collected. They were really nice. Also I have two electrician in for a month and they had to go elsewhere last night as we were booked up and when they came back today the first thing one said was if you get any cancellation let me know straight away we don't want to go anywhere else. (they are like faries they go to work at 7am don't have breakfast and eat their dinner in their room I never see them) now I know it is partly as I am close to their work but it gladens my heart. Also I had a chap book a year in advance today for the show currently in town as he was determined to get in with me. It is these people who make my day. I don't like people who kiss my arse to get in here when they don't even know me but when they say we want to make sure we stay with you and we know you are popular so we decided to book early and make sure of our place. It makes all the difference. I know its partly because of my amazing location (it is why we bought here), the fact we have a car park and that we do a competative price but I like to think it is partly because we look after our people..
I guarantee that it's how you look after your guests, not your car park or price. :) Thanks for sharing about your great guests!
I love that expression "making me crackers". haha! Not that it's a good thing to be crackers.

 

Samster

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Yes, agreed. We do make an impression, one way or the other. The vibes we put out can make or break a guest visit, it effects the overall atmosphere. Yes, we have the power!
Let's just recall a visit anyone of us has had where the innkeeper(s) made you feel unwelcome. You felt like you were a number and it was just a business.
I mentioned the guests from upstate NY who checked out today who told me of a variety of B&B's they have visited over the years, and what caught me as strange as they mentioned all of the innkeepers by name.
I have not had a guest do this before. most cannot recall the inn names let alone the innkeepers. Good or bad, they remembered each of them. They were a lovely couple. They told me about a horrible inn experience and he said he wanted to review them on TA and let others know what they were in for, and the wife said No, as she felt sorry for that couple.
Why did they tell me? Well I mentioned in conversation how you can go to a B&B and encounter the cantankerous innkeeper and it really puts a damper on your stay. I saw them roll their eyes in agreement and then say "You got that right!" and then told me that story.
Overall, out of all the stories they told, I heard of great innkeepers and wonderful inns. Sometimes they explained it was not the building itself, but what the innkeepers had made it into. I liked hearing that!
I will be philosophical for a moment...bear with me as I try to put it into words:
Knowing what a great man has done versus knowing a great man makes all the difference in my life.
I say this as great men can build monumental things and have major accomplishments and change the world...but knowing someone who is great and having them impact my own life personally is what makes life worth living.
So for that, I commend the great innkeepers who personally impact lives each and every day in this business. Don't ever give up!.
That's inn-credible that your guests remember all their innkeepers names. For the most part, I think we remember the names of the folks we've stayed with too but I definitely remember the cranky innkeepers more. Definitely.
 

JBloggs

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When you are in the crux of too many guests and no time off, it is easy to be irritated by guest attitudes and behaviors. The more guests the more irritations, the more pitas, it is simple math.
Case in point. I had that 4am check in on motorcycles and I think there was one or two comments from the forum saying "Tell them to go to a hotel!" everyone else felt this was okay, these partying losers should be welcomed them in with open arms. (in a nutshell)
I still stand by it, you check in on the day you booked, not the next, no one unless it is an emergency will be checking it at 4am.
It was a lesson learned for us, I shared it to vent and also see how other innkeepers would handle it. Of course until YOU are in the situation you really can't answer it.
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.
So yes, this forum can be a downer. For those who are not in this business they don't get it, we all know that. It is SUPPOSED to be a forum for innkeepers - aspiring, former, current, retired, etc. For those inngoers who come here, well let's face it, they shouldn't. I have said that from the get go, they will get an eyeful and think bad things about innkeepers here who share openly about their day to days. They have NO IDEA what it is like on this side of the bed. :)
 

Joey Camb

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I think part of our trouble (this will seem like an odd way to put it) is the nature of our jobs it is required to always seem calm and in control and not have (mort will like this expression) have screaming ab dabs on a daily basis. It is our job to make it all seem easy so we can't help it if people think it is. I live in a weird town where you either work in a hotel, own a B&B or small hotel, work in one of the above or are the other half of a couple of or work in a restaurant (similar industry) so we have an expression "hotel people are hotel people" and no one outside understands. For example if someone is going on a first date we will say " is is a hotel person or a real person?" meaning they work outside the industry. But people outside the industry just don't understand that 1. you will be running late a lot due to emergencies 2. you have to cancel or reschedule due to work a LOT, 3. that you just do not have days off (this seems to confuse a lot of people) 4. you are always on call. 5. guests are like children and require constant supervision. there are virtually no other jobs where you live with your work. We have an expression here "you can't even poop in this town without everyone knowing what colour it is."
 

muirford

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Of course, it's always better when it's in the rear-view mirror to remember the best part of the experience you're leaving behind. Who wouldn't do that? Why would I dwell on the marsh-y bay smell of low tide at a recent seashore vacation when I can concentrate my memories on the beautiful sunset I watched from the deck?
Being in the thick of things, though, you talk about what's most on your plate at the moment and how to make things the best they can be. If I have a houseful of happy guests who compliment me and my inn, I don't really need to vent or collect advice. Which is what happens when you vent, as JB pointed out. I'm lucky to have a spouse to vent to, most times. Not everybody does, and the forum is open around-the-clock.
I hope people like Sunshine don't feel like they can't come here for venting or for advice - I think that's the point of our (the forum) existence.
 

JBloggs

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Guests just checked in, this is he "Mathematics and Quantitative Economics" and could not work out where to park, so parked way down the street.
I was out looking at the brickwork restoration work DH is doing...and saw them huffing and puffing across the street and up the side walk.
Once inside, they pulled out a map as they could not find the lake (apparently someone moved it). I get a pen, mark everything.
They then ask about the restaurant next door, I say "Yes! It is open for supper from 1 to 6pm today!" They give me sideways glances, and then ask "It isn't open every day?" No. It's not. Sorry.
Then I show them the guest areas, the refreshments, etc and take them up to their room.
She gets all nervous and says "Wait, where is the bathroom?" As she is pulling the door open to the bathroom. Okay, confession time...I keep the bathroom door either closed all the way or nearly closed all the way. It is just a "private" thing in my mind, I don't like walking guests into a room with a toilet staring at me.
I tell her she is walking into it right now.

Then he goes to move the car and she is outside the door saying "Well HOW DO I get to the back?" Y'all know we have a wrap around porch - just keep walking...you will find it.
People get disorientated when they travel, maybe when they leave their homes or businesses.
Now did that sound negative? I was only sharing the check in story, not calling them names or anything, not angry, just play by play. Demonstrating how it is when people travel, someone who is naturally brilliant is not so much when he is stuck in a car with his wife for 5 hours.
 

JBloggs

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It's always those Quantitative Economics and rocket scientists we have the most trouble with.

(oops am I hijacking? Sorry,just having some fun.)
 

Morticia

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When you are in the crux of too many guests and no time off, it is easy to be irritated by guest attitudes and behaviors. The more guests the more irritations, the more pitas, it is simple math.
Case in point. I had that 4am check in on motorcycles and I think there was one or two comments from the forum saying "Tell them to go to a hotel!" everyone else felt this was okay, these partying losers should be welcomed them in with open arms. (in a nutshell)
I still stand by it, you check in on the day you booked, not the next, no one unless it is an emergency will be checking it at 4am.
It was a lesson learned for us, I shared it to vent and also see how other innkeepers would handle it. Of course until YOU are in the situation you really can't answer it.
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.
So yes, this forum can be a downer. For those who are not in this business they don't get it, we all know that. It is SUPPOSED to be a forum for innkeepers - aspiring, former, current, retired, etc. For those inngoers who come here, well let's face it, they shouldn't. I have said that from the get go, they will get an eyeful and think bad things about innkeepers here who share openly about their day to days. They have NO IDEA what it is like on this side of the bed. :).
Joey Bloggs said:
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.

I still haven't listened all the way thru to those 2 guests who must have butt dialed the phone and left me a long, rambling blow by blow of their attempt to figure out how to get into my house! I have to remember to do that.
I am THE crankiest road-tripper there is. Have no idea from whence I sprang as my parents love to travel and so do my kids. The gene skipped a generation.
 

Joey Camb

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I always try to remember what it is like when DH and I go anywhere I am usually at the point where I want to kill him by the time I get there and so am not in the best receptive mood to speak to anyone and or make a good impression! (DH doesn't drive so I am also pooped as well as cross) Though on the other side of it any room would make me happy at this point so that is a plus from a B&B perspective!
 

muirford

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When you are in the crux of too many guests and no time off, it is easy to be irritated by guest attitudes and behaviors. The more guests the more irritations, the more pitas, it is simple math.
Case in point. I had that 4am check in on motorcycles and I think there was one or two comments from the forum saying "Tell them to go to a hotel!" everyone else felt this was okay, these partying losers should be welcomed them in with open arms. (in a nutshell)
I still stand by it, you check in on the day you booked, not the next, no one unless it is an emergency will be checking it at 4am.
It was a lesson learned for us, I shared it to vent and also see how other innkeepers would handle it. Of course until YOU are in the situation you really can't answer it.
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.
So yes, this forum can be a downer. For those who are not in this business they don't get it, we all know that. It is SUPPOSED to be a forum for innkeepers - aspiring, former, current, retired, etc. For those inngoers who come here, well let's face it, they shouldn't. I have said that from the get go, they will get an eyeful and think bad things about innkeepers here who share openly about their day to days. They have NO IDEA what it is like on this side of the bed. :).
Joey Bloggs said:
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.

I still haven't listened all the way thru to those 2 guests who must have butt dialed the phone and left me a long, rambling blow by blow of their attempt to figure out how to get into my house! I have to remember to do that.
I am THE crankiest road-tripper there is. Have no idea from whence I sprang as my parents love to travel and so do my kids. The gene skipped a generation.
.
Morticia said:
I still haven't listened all the way thru to those 2 guests who must have butt dialed the phone and left me a long, rambling blow by blow of their attempt to figure out how to get into my house! I have to remember to do that.
If you don't transcript that call to use in your book, I call first dibs on it.
 

Morticia

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When you are in the crux of too many guests and no time off, it is easy to be irritated by guest attitudes and behaviors. The more guests the more irritations, the more pitas, it is simple math.
Case in point. I had that 4am check in on motorcycles and I think there was one or two comments from the forum saying "Tell them to go to a hotel!" everyone else felt this was okay, these partying losers should be welcomed them in with open arms. (in a nutshell)
I still stand by it, you check in on the day you booked, not the next, no one unless it is an emergency will be checking it at 4am.
It was a lesson learned for us, I shared it to vent and also see how other innkeepers would handle it. Of course until YOU are in the situation you really can't answer it.
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.
So yes, this forum can be a downer. For those who are not in this business they don't get it, we all know that. It is SUPPOSED to be a forum for innkeepers - aspiring, former, current, retired, etc. For those inngoers who come here, well let's face it, they shouldn't. I have said that from the get go, they will get an eyeful and think bad things about innkeepers here who share openly about their day to days. They have NO IDEA what it is like on this side of the bed. :).
Joey Bloggs said:
But alas, get in the vehicle and take a trip. You will find out you are tired cranky achy hungry dehydrated perhaps had a fight with the S.O. on the road and arrive to "where have you been!" from an innkeeper. So yes, we can all see both sides of the equation. And we need to never forgot, people are different. Don't assume they think the same way we do, we each have our own thought processes that are unique.

I still haven't listened all the way thru to those 2 guests who must have butt dialed the phone and left me a long, rambling blow by blow of their attempt to figure out how to get into my house! I have to remember to do that.
I am THE crankiest road-tripper there is. Have no idea from whence I sprang as my parents love to travel and so do my kids. The gene skipped a generation.
.
Morticia said:
I still haven't listened all the way thru to those 2 guests who must have butt dialed the phone and left me a long, rambling blow by blow of their attempt to figure out how to get into my house! I have to remember to do that.
If you don't transcript that call to use in your book, I call first dibs on it.
.
I caught the very first part of it today, which is how I remembered it was on there. I can actually hear them as they drive by the house complaining they were going too fast to see the sign. (It's a 25 MPH right here, they must have been cruising!)
 
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