We got three rental inquiries the first day we posted our house on Enchanted-Isle.com. After a brief exchange of emails we booked our first rental.
It’s hard to describe how we felt about this—excited, of course, but also vaguely uncomfortable. It was almost like inviting strangers to dinner and then charging them for their pork chops.
And yet we knew we were giving our (future) guests their money’s worth and more. Our prices were extremely competitive, and the house was clean and bright with terrific ocean views.
Ironically our first guests lived five blocks from us in D.C. And although we never met them, I remember their names well—Jeremy and Carol. They were arriving the day after Christmas and would stay for a week.
We couldn’t have been more excited if Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip were dropping by for tea.
More rentals followed—by the end of our first season we had hosted eight couples—but since Jeremy and Carol would be our first they became our target audience, so to speak.
We tried to imagine what they were like. This, I reasoned, would allow us to anticipate their every need.
But since I’m cursed with an unnaturally fertile imagination, this line of thinking quickly got out of hand.
What if they were Buddhists? We’d need some sort of shrine.
What if they were billiards fanatics? A pool table.
What if they were nudists? More curtains.
You get my drift.
Eventually Michael suggested that we focus on what would make us comfortable. This sounded right.
And it was.
I’ll never forget the simple words Jeremy and Carol wrote in our guest book at the end of their stay:
“It felt like home.”