Sunday, May 14, 2006

Waiting for Guests

It is pouring outside. Dismal weather! When the guests come down to breakfast, I feel like saying, "Ahoy, mateys!" And the phone has stopped ringing. Not one call this whole weekend. The drop in reservations is due to the fact that no one can think vacation in weather like this. What's more, our land line seems to have succombed to the torrential rain. But, let's backtrack to 4:00 pm, yesterday...

Sven and I are waiting for our latest guests to arrive. Three generations are coming to celebrate Mother’s Day. A two-year old, his mother, and her mother from Caen, France. Liberty Coin Suite is all set. I look outside and wish I could wave a magic wand to create instant sunshine. Raindrops hit the window and trickle down the screen. The vintage table is covered with water. From my vantage point by the computer, I can see four shades of green. The dark yew branches, lime-green leaves of our pear tree, the grass, of course, and the variegated hues of an evergreen. I study all the different shades and decide I never noticed them before because, with Cape Cod's vivid blue sky, one tends to look up, rather than down. The greens stand out more clearly against grey.

Waiting for guests must be one of the more unpleasant parts of being a bed & breakfast host. I always ask people for an approximate arrival time. Some stop on the way for a bite to eat. Others get caught in rush-hour traffic. This weekend the rain must have slowed travel. Our Seagull Cottage couple, here from Germany, arrived several hours later than expected Friday night. If guests tell me 4:00 and don’t show up, I worry. Are they lost? Were they in an accident? Will they come at all?

The Liberty Coin guests appear at 6:30. Ah, yes! I remember now. The French have a tendency to be late. 4:00 can mean 5:00, or even 6:00. Sven puts on a raincoat and helps carry in the suitcases. I have the opportunity to speak French and enjoy it. When I join Sven later, he is lying in front of the TV, exhausted. Another busy weekend at Chez Sven!