It’s a part of a mantra taken from the Taittiriya Upanishad. अतिथी means without a fixed calendrical time , देवो means God and भव means Be ! This code of conduct epitomises Indian hospitality .
A lot amongst us would love visit and spend a few days with our family and close friends .The late night chats , cosy get togethers , helping around in the kitchen ,cooking your signature dishes , entertaining the family with your talents , shopping , watching movies complete with filter kapee and popcorn .
Our home was always bustling with people ! . In fact Maa got teased a lot that it was a literal relay race of house guests per se .
So the tradition continues ! It’s always a pleasure to have people over at Shalom . So first things first . Let’s get the guest room ready !!
With a little creativity let’s do up the room so our guests can feel completely at home !
Shall we keep the decor in the guest room simple ? Of course do it up according to your own style (it is your home after all and should reflect your personality ) but let’s keep the self-expression under control!
I remember a friend commenting that our guest room with it neutral wall colour and white bed linen ( vanilla vision) and just a few colour accents was so soothing unlike their place where everything from the the the curtains to soft furnishings were dark with loud prints and when he got back he felt like he was walking into a rainbow !
Try to provide an empty closet or at least a couple of shelves in the closet or dresser . Not many people like living out of a suitcase, sometimes everything can descend into a wrinkly chaos( don’t believe me?? I will share pics of Spouses strolly )
Include a desk and/or comfy chair in the room. If your guests are staying for a while, they might need a temporary workspace. So this will be helpful .
Its a great option to set up a small coffee and tea station. Place a small kettle , place sachets of coffee, creamer, and tea bags and stirrers on a tray . Add a few paper serviettes and a scented candle . If a guest feels like a late night cup of coffee or early morning chai it’s much more comfortable for them to brew it in their own room than have to knock around in an unfamiliar kitchen.
I also leave some crackers , dry fruits and a fresh fruit for those midnight hunger pangs .
If they are new to your city make a note of restaurants, parks, transport options and print out a homemade brochure.Include distance, directions, rough costs etc !
Leave a sticky note on the bedside table with your wifi access info. A universal charger for cell phones is a thoughtful item to add . Some of us do forget to pack .
Provide a basket of toiletries in case any were forgotten. Include travel packs of toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, soap, mouthwash, face and body lotion, sunscreen, bug spray, contact case, glasses case, eye drops, dental floss, toothbrushes, a hair brush and comb, band aids, razors, nail polish and remover, an OTC pain killer , pain balm , nail clipper , cotton balls, q-tips , a hangover kit and anything else you can think of . Place them in the guest bathroom or any other convenient spot in the room .
Along with clean bedding, provide fresh towels and enough napkins . Fold them neatly and place them where the guest can see them. Make sure the guests know the towels are for their use and not to mistake them for decorative pieces !! It’s such a warm fuzzy feeling to see soft, fluffy towels waiting to be used after a refreshing shower .
Do get luxurious – provide some plush bathrobes which you can hang in the closet for your guests to happily discover.
Also don’t forget a pair of flip flops each for your guests!
Remember hospitality is not about highly curated homes or perfectly cooked meals .. it’s about sharing your life with people who care enough to visit you . So let us be grateful to each one who comes home because they have been sent as a guide from beyond !
The guest room is now ready . Please feel free to come over for a change after this jazz is past us ! Welcome to Shalom .. the place we call home !