A few basic rules of the road If you want to keep good relationships with those who have given you safe haven.
This post is specifically aimed at Travelers, Road dogs, Gypsy wanderers and Hitchhikers…..
Please read, respect, and print out if necessary as a reminder when you are on the road. It seems that the last generation has never been taught a few basic rules of the road that I lived by and was taught when I spent my many years wandering around. If you want to keep good relationships with those who give you safe haven and want to be asked to return again or be allowed to remain for a while here are a few tips to help you along this path.
1: Always leave a place you stay better than you found it in some way. This has served me well over the years as I have always been welcome back because I left my hosts with a smile.
2: Always offer to help with chores. If you do not cook the meal and you eat, do the dishes. If the trash is getting full, take it out. If firewood is low, replenish it. These little things mean a lot to your host and will guarantee you will always be welcome back.
3: If you see a project that needs done offer to do it and do a good job of it. This has gotten me road money on many occasions because my effort was noticed and this in turn led my host to recommend me to a friend who needed work done and was willing to pay for it.
Do not offer to do something and then leave it half done or unfinished. If you cannot do it well, do not offer to do it in the first place. A badly done job means that your host may have to redo it or pay someone to fix your mistakes. This can burn a bridge rather than build one.
4: If your host has internet, be aware that they may have download limits. Limit your internet use to checking email and sending messages unless you specifically ask your host if it is ok to download a movie or music. Tying up the internet while your host is online is not only unkind, it is considered rude. You are a guest in their home.
They pay the bills for the ability to use the internet when they need to. Be conscious of their internet habits and respectful of their kindness in allowing you to connect. Limit your time online. If you spend the entire time you are visiting sitting on your laptop, then they may be left feeling that you are not there to visit with them, you are only there for the free wi-fi.
5: Clean up after yourself. I can not say this enough… Clean up your own mess. If you use the bath, clean the tub. If you use the kitchen, clean up the mess. If you use a dish, wash it. This will let your host know that you do not want to be a burden on them and appreciate their kindness to you.
6: Pitch in for food if you are staying more than a day or two. If you cannot help with the food you are eating, do not eat their stash of treats and make sure you do extra to help repay their kindness. Last but not least ………
7: Do not overstay your welcome. If your hosts are having marital problems or issues, make other arrangements as soon as possible. Another person staying in your house can make things really uncomfortable for a couple who may need some space and privacy. What goes on in their house, should always stay in their house. If you betray this last rule you will never be welcome back into their home as you will have broken a trust that cannot be rebuilt.
When someone welcomes you into their home they expect that they can trust you to keep their secrets to yourself, if you lose this trust you will have burnt a bridge you may need at sometime again in the future.
Please print this out and pass it on to those who may be travelers and may not have been taught these things before setting out on the road. It is up to us experienced wanderers to help the youngins learn the ways of the road.
Be safe and much love.
Contributed by Gypsy James