Guests always say to me when they are leaving “We have had a fantastic stay with you, so you go and relax now we have all gone.”
Our morning starts at 6am with the breakfast preparation. Every day this includes setting up the buffet breakfast before we even think about the cooked ones to follow.
All of our guests choose from a comprehensive menu. We use local produce and are proud of our breakfasts.We cook, serve tea and coffee to our guests and at the same time we chat, we laugh and sometimes we even cry with them. Then we clear up the breakfast room and wash up. Guests pay us – oh yes!!!!
We run upstairs to start stripping beds, emptying bins, washing cups and saucers and replenishing stock of teabags etc. We clean the bathrooms – my aim is to clean the shower like a mirror gleaming, then I’m happy. Hoover through, fresh towels ,dressing gowns and head downstairs to a mountain of washing.
Washing, ironing and theres no time for coffee. Then the phone goes (usually when I’m as far away from it as I could possibly be!) with people wanting to make reservations, checking availability for their stay to visit the South East or someone from India calling trying to sell me something (grrr!). The postman often knocks with deliveries of key bits for the B and B.We check the time – OMG! its gone mid day and we need to shower! It’ll need to be very quick showers before the next guests check in. We greet them, show them to their rooms and make tea and coffee for them in the garden and of course engage in conversation because we want every guest to feel at home. The time is marching on and we still haven’t finished the washing, not to mention started the ironing! Oh, oh, one of us is going to have to go to do the food shopping whilst the other waits for imminent guests. It wouldn’t do to run out of a particular cereal or milk or bread for breakfast! There are emails to check with frequency (it might be the National Lottery telling us that we’ve won the jackpot! Or another reservation to update our diary) and a blog to keep up to date with! And so our daily cycle of events goes around and around and around (and we still need to do the ironing!)
We forgot about lunch – it’s another late one but still tastes good and it’s nice to sit quietly for a short while with a nice salad and a drink! Phew! Deep breath! Relax!
It’s time to take care of the large garden now! This must be kept in pristine condition as many of our guests enjoy either sitting, overlooking the garden or walking through it to study the range of plants! Our three dogs usually keep them company…….
Ah yes, our three beloved dogs – they love the guests (as long as they make a fuss of them!) and of course they want and need to be walked and fed…….
Its now dinner time for us and the chance to sit together and enjoy a peaceful few moments.
This is usually followed by planning the next day, checking peoples choices for breakfast and prep again. Carol can’t miss either Emmerdale or Coronation Street and who can begrudge her a few pleasures in life and the chance to RELAX. Then our guests come home so we greet them all and find out how there evening has been. Aah this could mean only one thing……… BED and zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
So you can see for yourselves that running a B&B (and trying to maintain a standard) is hard work but very rewarding. We get to share a large part of our lives (even allowing for Ceri’s own work) and get to meet many interesting, enjoyable guests who are happy to see us in return and grateful for the chance of staying at Beechwood with us.