And so we debut a new Innkeeper's Tales series by a guy who we'd gladly swap lives with: John Voigtmann, owner of La Bandita in the Tuscan hillside.
TUSCANY – When I decided to quit my record industry job, move across the world to a place I never lived, learn a new language, and take on a massive renovation project in the middle of a UNESCO Heritage site, I knew that I was in for a wild ride. What I didn't realize, however, was that being a small hotel manager also means being a mechanic, a medic, and at times a marriage counselor. I've encountered some hilarious situations with our guests, and now, after five years of running La Bandita, I've amassed a few points of advice.
- When celebrating your recent divorce with a boozy trip through Tuscany, don't booty call the cute policeman you met earlier in the day at 2 a.m. from your car, which you've run off the road. (If you do, please throw the empty prosecco bottles out of the car first.)
- When stopping on a slope in an Italian stick-shift car, be sure to engage the emergency brake before stopping to take pictures of the sheep. I'd rather not have to call the fire department to fish your brand new Avis rental car from the pond at the bottom of my road.
- When attending your daughter's romantic destination wedding in Tuscany, don't show up with your new (much younger) Russian girlfriend. If you do, don't let her drink vodka and pass out before 9 p.m. in the common area.
- Please don't bring your 85-year-old priest on holiday with you. Because when he falls down the stairs of the Siena cathedral, we're the ones that have to take him to the hospital.
Stay tuned for more life advice.