Here in the US where the threat of COVID-19 has slightly waned, people are just starting to travel again. It’s so good to see those you love and have missed. There’s nothing better than a face-to-face chat. But now is the time to re-evaluate the rules for houseguests. Here are a few suggestions.
Know the Rules for Houseguests
Ask the (COVID) questions. Everyone will feel safer if you lay all the cards on the table before you arrive. Is everyone vaccinated? Does everyone feel okay about not wearing masks indoors? Is hugging allowed or should everyone keep a distance? Will we be eating out at restaurants or dining in? Will we be going out to any public places or staying at home? Everyone will have a better time if they’re honest about their Covid comfort level.
Lend a hand. Everyone is tired of “doing it all” for themselves over these long months of isolation. However, that doesn’t mean guests should allow their hosts to wait on them, hand and foot. Just like your Mama taught you, it’s polite to pitch in. Help where you can. For instance, offer to buy a takeout meal (or take hosts out to eat, if everyone is comfortable with that). Clean up after yourself. Offer to wash the dishes. Hosts should leave soap, hand towels, and sanitizing wipes where everyone can have access to them.
Make plans for yourself. No matter how excited you are to get together, give your host a little space. We are all out of the habit of sharing our living space with others. You can give your host some breathing room by planning some time on your own. Take a walk. Read a book. Take a nap. Your host will be relieved that you don’t need to be entertained 100% of the time.
More Rules? Yes!
Know how long to stay. My aunt would only spend 3 days with me at a time. I never understood it. But then she explained, “Fish and houseguests. Both begin to stink after 3 days.” She made me chuckle, but she also made a great point. Some people are so excited to visit that they want to move in. Don’t let yourself become a stinker of a houseguest. Know when it’s time to leave. It’s better to be missed than to become an irritation.
Say thanks! When it’s time to go, don’t forget to say thank you. That can take a few different forms. For example, I once had a guest who stripped the sheets off her bed so I wouldn’t have to. I appreciated the gesture very much. You could leave your host a small gift—a bottle of wine, a bottle of gourmet hot sauce, a book, a box of chocolates. Put a little thought into giving something your host will love. Lastly, always, always write a thank you note. Be mindful and considerate of your host. That’s the best way to be invited back again.
Is there a rule you would add? Leave it in the comments.
USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR DONNA FASANO is a three-time winner of the HOLT Medallion, a CataRomance Reviewers Choice Award winner for Best Single Title, a Desert Rose Golden Quill Award finalist, a Golden Heart finalist, and a two-time winner of Best Romance of the Year given by BigAl’s Books & Pals Review Blog. Her books have sold nearly 4 million copies worldwide and have been published in two dozen languages. Her books have made the Kindle Top 100 Paid List numerous times, climbing as high as #5.