Everything I ever needed to know about hospitality, I learned from my children.
When their grandparents, friends or birthday party guests are scheduled to come, my children are beside themselves with excitement. The front door is opened about as much times as I hear the question “When will they get here?” The neighborhood playmates, who drop by unannounced, are embraced with the warmest of welcomes. Sadly, to me, a visitor is only welcome… as soon as the floor is scrubbed, laundry folded, toys hidden, apple pie is in the oven, wine served, and table manners at the ready. When you’re an introverted adult hostess, a visit, as wonderful as it is, often comes with stress and sacrifice.
Over the years, my family and I have been treated to hospitality beyond compare. There were no colorful banners that awaited us at the airport but our hosts cooked for us, after careful consideration of our preferences and allergies. We were chauffeured around in vans to places we helped pick out. Clean sheets and soft towels laid out and sleeping arrangements moved around to accommodate us. We were given the flexibility to dart around without worrying about stepping on the host’s toes or the family’s schedule.
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