How to deal with unexpected house guests

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Entertaining does not implicitly imply feeding, and when unexpected guests drop by, sometimes it’s just best to pull out the most boring board game you own, and say “let’s all play until we’ve each won a game!”.  Don’t be too surprised if they all of a sudden remember that they had to be somewhere, and forgot all about it.  “Nice to see you again, we’ll just be on our way now”.  However, if the unexpected guests are family or good friends, then you should probably fix up the spare room, recreation room or even a child’s room for them, and let the child either bunk with you or a sibling in order to accommodate your unexpected guests.

Sometimes there is a fine line to be drawn between showing good manners and feeding a ne’er do well.  When company calls, and they do so with good intentions, offering to put them up for the night while they are on their way to grandma’s house is better than making them stay at the red-cape inn.  However, if they are people that are known to take advantage of others, overstay their welcome and wear on their host’s nerves, then standing firm at offering a meal and some directions, or the use of the phone will have to do.

Making a meal for five is not that much harder than making a meal for four.  Eating smaller portions and adding another vegetable or some string beans and voila, everyone’s eating and talking up a storm.  However, if, during dinner, they happen to ask if you would mind if they stayed there for a week or two, you really should say yes, you would mind.  One night, maybe two is okay to ask a friend or family member on the spur of the moment.  any longer and they are simply taking advantage of you.

There are many people that will carry the essentials to feed, bathe and provide comfortable sleeping quarters just in case someone were to drop by.  These people deserve to be dropped in on and taken advantage of, so dig in and enjoy!  But if the hosts are a family with children in school, then a Friday and/or Saturday night stay is as much as should be offered.  If you are taking food from a child by staying at someone’s home for longer than they can afford, then you deserve to be thrown out on your rump.

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