Please Don’t Smear That on My Sheets!
It was almost midnight when Bob and Brandon arrived at Butterfly Hollow, the quaint little B&B that would be their home for the next few days. Bob had driven straight through from Columbus, Ohio to East Tennessee to spend the weekend fishing with his eighteen year old son, Brandon, before he took off for college. They had been looking forward to this trip for months now and had reserved a spot with a local fishing guide that specialized in catching Stripper on the Caney Fork and Cumberland rivers.
The drive up the long gravel driveway in the dark had been a little unnerving and the glow of the soft amber lights on the porch were a comforting sight. They quietly approached the porch and nearly jumped out of their skins when someone rounded the corner out of the shadows.
It was just David, the owner of the Bed and Breakfast and his four-legged sidekick, Daisy Mae.
“Ya’ll come on in,” he said, welcoming them into his home. “Here’s the light switch for the kitchen. There’s the coffee pot. Just hit the the red button in the morning and it’ll start brewing.”
Bob reminded him that they wouldn’t need breakfast in the morning since they were leaving at 5:00 o’clock for their fishing adventure but that hot coffee would be most appreciated.
David pointed out the big plate of homemade cookies sitting on the counter and Brandon helped himself to a handful.
“You two are checking into Lily’s Attic,” he told them, stifling a yawn. “It’s right at the top of the stairs and your private bathroom is right there in the hall.” He wished them both a goodnight then he and Daisy slipped out the back door.
It was very late and 5:00 o’clock would come early, so Brandon took his shower first and immediately went to bed. Bob, needing a few minutes to unwind, sat downstairs in the comfortable living room and perused the extensive book collection on the barn-wood bookshelf.
Since Brandon was already sleeping when Bob finished his nice long hot shower, he didn’t bother turning on a light in the room that they were sharing. Instead, he noiselessly slipped into his bed on the other side of the room and promptly went to sleep.
It was late afternoon and I was kneeling in the garden filling a big bowl with everything to make a mouthwatering fresh spring salad. I snipped rainbow Chard, Butter-crunch, Romaine and Red Sails lettuce leaves. A few green onions and radishes went into the mix. It was too early for cucumbers but I clipped a few wild purslane stems from our never-ending supply of this tasty weed.
The white van pulled into the small parking lot in front of the house and I noticed the Ohio license plate and assumed that this was Bob and Brandon. I hadn’t waited up for them last night, so this would be my first chance to meet them.
Bob’s first words upon stepping out of the van were, “I’m so very sorry about your sheets!” Needless to say, I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about. At this early stage of running our home as a Bed and Breakfast, I didn’t go into the guests rooms unless there was a need. So, I was clueless about what could have happened to the sheets on his bed that would require an apology but to say my mind didn’t wander to all kinds of scenarios wouldn’t be truthful. I guess he caught my lost expression because he continued to explain.
“This morning when I woke up, I noticed the sheets were covered in a big ole ugly dark brown stain. Even the pillowcase wasn’t spared,” he swallowed and looked pained to explain. “I mean, it’s all over the sheets ma’am. You know, I’m almost 60 and I figured there’d come a day when this could happen but well, heck, I thought at the very least I’d be in my own home.”
So, now I am thinking that this man had crapped in my bed. Well, that’s what it sounded like he was trying to say to me anyway.
“That sure was an awful moment when I assumed the worst had happened in a strangers house 700 miles away from my home,” he said, shuffling his feet a little. “But, you cannot imagine the relief when I pulled that sheet up to my nose and took a big whiff.”
Oh no! I’m guessing that by now my face is all screwed up in a total look of distaste. I’d already decided that I’d just have Bob take the sheets off and throw them away for me. I did not want to witness this gross sight and I definitely didn’t want to smell it!
“The good news is,” he continued with a sheepish smile. “It’s not that I lost control after all. I just didn’t take the little chocolate dove bar off of my pillow last night before getting into bed all hot from the shower. So, now there is chocolate smeared all over your pretty white cotton sheets.”
I was unaware of the breathe I had been holding until I let out a huge sigh of relief myself and almost hugged old Bob. He laughed some more then offered to buy us new sheets if the chocolate didn’t come out.
That is how a stranger that was a guest at Butterfly Hollow became to be a good friend whom we fondly call, Chocolate Bob. He even came back a few years later with his wife and we have shared this story with many, many guests that have sat around our breakfast table.
That is also why I quit putting little chocolates on the pillows in the guests rooms and why I always went in and checked the rooms and straightened the beds on a daily basis after that. 🙂
Cold water and Dawn dish detergent takes out chocolate just fine.